03 Feb Wrightwood – The Perfect Trail Town
It isn’t nice to call any town a trail town because a town needs to be much more than a trail town in order to have the prosperity needed to make it a good trail town. Thru-hikers don’t really bring in much money so when a town is welcoming to hikers it truly comes from the heart. Wrightwood loves thru-hikers even if they aren’t the most profitable customers.
When a thru-hiker arrives in town, usually by a free trail angel ride down Hwy 2 or the Acorn side trail, the hiker first stops at Mountain Hardware where they sign a register and are given a PCT pin. The Book at MH not only contains a register, but is a bible of sorts for town trail angels and town services. Here you can find homes that Angels have opened to hikers. There are also contacts for angel rides, but Wrightwood is so compact that within a third of a mile of the hardware store there is lodging, post office (next door), grocery (next door), restaurants, bars, and library. These services are sometimes miles apart in other towns.
It seems every store whether the corner gas station, grocery, or hardware store has a hiker section with freeze dried meals and an assortment of hiker needs. Early in the morning, I dropped by the convenience store mainly to kill time until the Evergreen cafe opened. The cashier heard that I was thru-hiking and offered me biscuits “on us”.
Wrightwood is more than a trail town. It is a destination for snow skiing and relaxing around beautiful mountain scenery. Visitors can climbi nearby Mt Baden Powell and dreamers can shop mountain real estate.