Home for a day. Busy. Busy. Busy. Set up food for the next leg (Cajon Pass – Wrightwood – Auga Dulce). Pack for the kick-off at Lake Morena. Its an annual 3 day event (but you can arrive there on Thursday) which started in the 90’s by the 1977 PCT hiker class to celebrate the trail, an opportunity for reunion with fellow thru hikers, and to help current and prospective hikers with their quest to hike the PCT.
The best way to describe it is “Hiker Woodstock”. This year was pretty close cause it rained, and rained hard. One of my friends from work that I fish with flew down Thursday to attend the kickoff with us. She will be joining us most likely at Echo Summit. This weekend she earned the trail name of ” Sister Mary Smart Ass”, it fits her well. I think she had every article of clothing she brought as it was almost as cold as when we hiked through the blizzard. She got to test her new tent though (Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1…worked well), we on the other hand slept comfy in the bed of our truck.
During this break, we traded out some gear. New sleep pads (REI flash). Lighter but same R-value (heat generated) as our ExPed pads, and they appear to be of tougher material.
From the vendors at the Kickoff we added an additional piece of Tyvek for a roomier cowboy camp spread and/or for when we can only find single wide spaces we can go separate or long wise. We also replaced nylon stuff sacks with Zpacks cuben fiber bags, one for my sleeping bag and another for Paul’s food bag. Should have gotten more. I suppose we can always order them and have them shipped to us. We now have ALL long tent spikes for our tarp and/or tent. Rain gear is back in the pack, mainly because Mother Nature and Mr. Murphy are on our ass and seem to have taken a special interest in our adventure. We never took them for readers. (Pretty sure were gonna pay for that remark…bring it!). We saw many of the hikers we have been leap frogging with; Grasshopper, Why Not, Monsoon, Beowolf, Bipolar, Willie, Bambi, Zombie, Me Too, Colonel and several others whose trail names elude us at the moment. In our campsite was a couple who had just finished the first 20 miles into Lake Morena.
We got to talking about what we had experienced and seen so far. Dan then says, “I thought I recognized you from somewhere. And now I know. I saw you on the channel 10 news when you were at Mt. Laguna.”. Hmmm, so I guess we did make the news. Somehow we got to get a copy of that interview. We spent time with our good family friend, Mike who is godfather to our son, and hiked the PCT in 1977. What is funny is that somehow we never knew this until 2 years ago when we were telling him about our plans to hike the PCT. He replied, “Ya I’ve done that”. Bullshit we call (Mike’s a pretty convincing story teller). But as it turns out, he did and he did it with three other guys. He has some pretty incredible tales of mishaps and challenges which earned their group the trail name of ” The Unfortunates”. It was good to catch up and visit with friends. Eat lots of food and consume adult beverages till we ran out. Once they had the 2014 PCT class photo we headed back home to finish prepping for reentry back to trail.
We saw our kids, and got to go to our daughter’s farm program event at her college. We’ve checked the weather tonight’s gonna be COLD but dry, so we got that going for us. Our son will drop us off at the Cajon Pass and once we hit the trail we’ll do a “quick” 5 miles and call it to set us up for the ascent to Wrightwood. Uphill here we come!