PCT Day 43 – Bouquet Canyon

PCT Day 43 – Bouquet Canyon

7.4 miles, near 464.0

• We took our typical time to pack up in the morning. We stopped at the post office and got McDonald’s. Bradley’s friend Dylan drove us back to the trail head, so we were back on the trail hiking around noon.

• We passed a group of hikers all snuggled in the shade taking a siesta. Guessing this will become more common for all of us soon.

• A swarm of bees whizzed passed us while we were climbing, riding the breeze. I didn’t know what was going to happen, but I could hear it coming, pretty unnerving.

• I got my own bag of cheddar and sour cream ruffles for this section. Any bets on how long it will last?

• We hiked until we reached a piped spring. We packed out beers and cooled them down with the water. Not as chilly as we hoped, but it’ll do.

• Since we had a late start, we had to hike past sunset before we reached our camp. It was a beautiful sunset, but the closest camp spots were taken once we got there. We had to hike a little up the trail and make do with a rough spot.

• We cooked with our headlamps and gazed at the stars. We exchanged headlamp Morse code with hikers way above us on the ridge.

• Once in our tent, I heard a hiker night hiking by at 1045pm just before I turned over to sleep. We haven’t tried true night hiking yet, I’m not totally convinced it’s a good idea, especially because you miss all the views.

PCT Day 42 – Ventura Zero

PCT Day 42 – Ventura Zero

• Today we spent the day in Ventura. We ate brunch at a Mexican restaurant, drank some beer, drank some coffee, walked on the beach and pier, drank more beer, browsed the thrift shops, and ate Thai for dinner.

• The Mexican brunch was a buffet with bottomless mimosas. It had double of what the Wrightwood buffet offered and then some. I finally got my taco station!

• Midway through the meal, a bird pooped on our table on the patio. It was directly in between me and claira, but the momentum sent the splatter towards claira. The poop splatter blended in with her food, so she wisely got a new plate and drink. I kept eating and I still feel fine.

• We watched a boy catch a fish on the pier and a group of older ladies took turns getting a photo with the fish.

• We had a beer at one of those pubs where they give you a wristband and you can pour your own beer. We were watching Jurassic Park 2 on the TV before they changed the channel so both TVs next to each other were playing the same basketball game. We asked them to switch it back so we could watch a T-Rex wreck San Diego.

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Taking a zero day in Buenaventura 🏖

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PCT Day 41 – Agua Dulce

PCT Day 41 – Agua Dulce

9.5 miles, near 453.8

• The maintenance guy finally fixed the hot tub heater this morning, so a bunch of hikers were soaking. Would have been nice to have after hiking yesterday, no desire to jump in this morning.

• We hit the trail and started climbing. We had plans to get picked up at the Vasquez Rocks near Agua Dulce by Claira’s mom so we could hang out in Ventura for weekend. The rocks are a famous back drop for some Star Trek scenes and other Hollywood movies.

• Had another hummingbird encounter when I was standing very still shooting some video, it flew within 2 feet of my head, just checking me out.

• I’m always up for trying new things, but store brand peanut butter is off the table from now on. The most recent jar was not nearly creamy enough.

• Once we loaded the minivan, we headed to Hiker Heaven, a trail angels house that is setup to accept resupply boxes, host campers in the back yard, and provide pretty much everything a hiker could need. The whole operation was super impressive, I was a little disappointed we didn’t need to stay there.

• Mom sent us a resupply box, so we needed to stop in. The entire garage was filled with boxes on shelves. We got everything we needed, including a new pair of shoes for me.

• Next we stopped at REI. My pants always sag and stress in the crouch, so the entire front and back had rips at the seams. I picked up some new shorts and tights. Carie picked out a new sleeping pad and I will use her current pad since mine broke. Our friends were letting me use their spare foam pad the last few days since my air pad broke.

• We did some laundry at home, then went to dinner at a Persian restaurant in Simi Valley.

PCT Day 40 – Acton

PCT Day 40 – Acton

19.8 miles, near 444.3

• Carie gets mad at me in real life for things I do in her dreams. Anyone else have this problem? 😝

• We passed a pair of trekking poles on the trail just outside of camp. Usually a backpack on the trail with no body means they’re off in the woods “doing the business”. We weren’t sure, so we left it alone. 10 minutes later, we saw the hiker “kingpin” hiking up the trail towards us, going back for his poles (he forgot them after “doing his business”).

• More hummingbird encounters. One curious fellow approached me while I was doing my morning business.

• We hiked down to a ranger station for lunch. They had picnic tables and a ready to drink water cache. There was one guy manning the place, he was selling cans of soda and little bags of chips for $1, so we spent $5 on a variety. Nothing like a cold drink on a hot day.

• We spent the afternoon telling each other stories about food. Food as a child, food on my bike trip.

• Question: Did anybody else’s parents toast rice cakes and melt a slice of cheese on top as a snack for their kids? That one was genius, and delicious. Thanks mom!

• We took a break at the river and spotted shapes in the clouds. I couldn’t understand why it was happening, but new clouds would appear above the nearest ridge out of thin air.

• We descended near the town of Acton and camped at the KOA. We didn’t have any cell service, but managed to order delivery pizza from a local spot. They delivered beer as well, which was cool, but hit and miss on getting exactly what you ordered. We also ordered a bunch of hot wings and they forgot the ranch and blue cheese. We are 0 for 2 on pizza guys this trip.

PCT Day 39 – Big Buck

PCT Day 39 – Big Buck

17.9 miles, near 424.5

• All the hikers in the site next to us were packing up and about ready to leave by 6am. The last guy rolled a joint and relaxed for another 10 minutes. Some interesting rituals and habits out here for sure.

• We made it to a fire station for lunch. It was pretty windy and hot, so it was nice to find some shade and picnic tables to relax. Some hikers ordered pizza delivery, it looked pretty good. A little regretful, but we’re planning to get pizza tomorrow.

• We’ve been seeing a lot of hummingbirds.

• It was a very hot and uphill afternoon. We were guessing on a place to camp, so there’s always a little anxiety attached to finishing our miles and figuring it out. The potential spots were very windy and pretty small, so I spent a lot of time trying to clear brush and rig some knots to get the tent tight.

• We didn’t have a great vantage of the valley below, and there were no clouds to enhance the colors, but it was still a lovely sunset.