Day 6: (21.8 miles)
mile 79.3 – 101.1 / 2967 ft – 3455 ft
Go figure we have to go up to go “down” to Barrel Springs and our last night before a much needed Zero. We were lucky to have overcast skies for the majority of the climb, which allowed us to conserve our water and pass up the 1/4 mile down and back up to the trail water cache at 3rd Gate. Thank you Thayer for the half liter for a blast of G2. We climbed most of the morning leapfrogging with Leon from Long Beach all the way to 3rd Gate. The view of the valley below was breathtaking, so much so that I forgot to snap a picture, so you’ll have to just go find out for yourselves! We have coined a phrase as a result of wondering how far we’ve gone, and how much more UP we have…‘You can wonder all you want, or you can wander and find out.’, and so goes our motto that gets us 2 more miles at a time. We are averaging ironically 2 miles an hour. Sometimes we are faster, but with quick breaks, which are timed by playing the Rock Rolling game. (It’s a game we’ve developed to 1. Satiate Paul’s desire to see how far a rock will roll down the sheer cliffs, and 2. To make us not overstay a quick break or breather.) So we stop to rest, often we want to stay longer, so we pick a rock, generally one that is a poorly located loose rock on the trail…like one in the middle upon which one might trip over, and gently nudge it off the edge (Don’t worry there is no trail below when we do this and no Bunnies were harmed in the rolling of the rocks). Sometimes it comes to an abrupt stop, and other times it cascades its way down to the canyon below like pinball machine to our delight, hence more rest.
Once we reach 3rd gate, whom do we find? None other than “Imaginary Friends”, followed shortly there after by Thayer and Leon.
We all plan on pushing to Barrel Springs and slowly disperse after lunch and a few stories.
On the way to Barrel Springs we pass the 100 mile mark, and take the obligatory picture, and push on, high on musical heroin to take our minds off our unhappy feet. Thanks to our friend John Sotter, his music made the last few miles much more enjoyable.
We made it to Barrel Springs with daylight to spare, and our highest mileage yet 21.8 miles. Pretty good for two fish out of water!