PCT Day 19 – Cabazon and Banning
19.5 miles, near 207.0
• Tried waking up at 5am again, still too dark. It’s depressing. Should get easier as the sunrise creeps earlier
• I went to let the air out of my sleeping pad, and accidentally pulled the valve straight off, which is pretty catastrophic. Doesn’t look repairable.
• We could see a patch of blue sky from camp at 8600 feet, but walked through ominous fog in the forest and cloudy skies before it cleared late in the afternoon.
• The trees were collecting condensation from the fog and making it “rain” just under the big trees.
• First section we hiked in the morning was the infamous Fuller Ridge, notorious among hikers as a very difficult section of trail due to snow and steepness. I imagined it as a rocky saddle between mountains, super exposed and treacherous. Turns out it’s just a walk through the woods on a steep incline. We did use our micro spikes for the snow, but it was already soft and slushy, so they didn’t help very much.
• There is a wind farm at the base of the mountain, we could start to hear the turbines as we got lower.
• We descended over 7500 feet to get from camp to the desert floor. I know my feet will have a few minor blisters tomorrow. We could see our final destination from up high, so the time it took us to get down seemed to take extra long.
• Carie was hiking in front of me a ways and rolled her ankle, but I didn’t see it before she started hiking again.
• We got off the trail near Cabazon. A couple of our friends had plans to stay nearby in Banning. I need a new sleeping pad, and it sounds like Carie probably needs a rest for her ankle. Once we got to the hotel, she took her shoe off, the ankle is pretty swollen.
• We went for Thai food and had the whole restaurant to ourselves.
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A long day in the fog, traversing snow, and descending to the desert floor. 1. Windmills at sunset 2. Stepping carefully through the snow 3. Hiking down the mountain 4. Windmills on the ground 5. Windmills on the hill 6. Can you spot the wild Carie? 7. San Jacinto 8. Made it to mile 200! 9. Our friends adorable dog 10. The San Jacinto summit More thoughts on the day in our blog, link in bio (tandempix.blog)