PCT Day 20

May 2, 2019
Mile 209.5 to mile 229, 19.5 miles total, no off trail miles!

Running total: 243.9 miles
We woke up in our big, comfy bed, then shuffled downstairs for free hotel breakfast! We were pleasantly surprised by the spread- cinnabons!! After stuffing our faces, we quickly packed, filled our waters in the gym (where we found a scale- I weigh the exact same as pre-hike, and we had a leeeeetle beet of a shock when we found that Matthew had lost 10lbs!!!), and arranged for an Uber ride back to the underpass.
We had the Uber drop us off at an underpass…#hikertrash

There we ran into Raspberry, 12-Pack, and Coach, all enjoying the restocked cooler of trail magic. Not wanting to get sucked in to another vortex, Matt and I slid out from the bridge and started our hike with Cheery, a guy we had met the day prior.

After about four miles (mile 213.4) we came to the Mesa Wind Farm, where we had heard that there are often drinks and snacks for sale AND a flush toilet! We walked up to find a group of hikers gathered under a shade, enjoying literal ice-cold water. Matt and I each savored one ourselves, then I left the group and headed inside. Guys, they had Klondike bars!!!! And so many other treats!! They had a can on the table and a list of prices for the treats, but it was all honor system. We enjoyed the trail magic and our air-conditioned break, with Matthew trying to eat as many cals as possible, then headed back out in the heat.

The day was full of ups and downs, quite literally and figuratively. I was again feeling slow and sludgy, and at one point I stopped to point out a lizard to Matthew, but Matt, in a groove, busted by me without even an “excuse me”- which TOTALLY pissed me off- I remained grumpy for a good portion of the day & gave Matt quite the cold shoulder. (Back in my senior year of high school my English teacher for 3 out of 4 years told me my spirit animal was an elephant- first I was offended {was he calling me fat??!!} but he had explained that I never forget things and hold major grudges- he was totally on to something!!)

Looked like a skinny elephant to me!

Around mile 220.1, when we reached the Whitewater River, I finally stopped being a bitch…kinda ;). Matt enjoyed the water while I enjoyed my lunch and snacks. After a solid hour break, and crossing our first river, we started back up again shortly after 3pm. AGAIN I was nauseous and burping up my food- I decided that the next day I would try more frequent, small snacks throughout the day instead of the big, “eat all the things” lunches I have been doing.

After some more ups and downs (and crossing into San Bernardino County- at mile 224.2!) we made it to mile 226, where many people were planning to camp for the night. The early evening brought cooler air and I was feeling better, so we decided to push for another 3 miles- God I’m glad we did!! After 16.5 shitty miles (that Matthew actually really liked!!), I had my 3 favorite miles of the PCT thus far!!

We hiked through desert, swamps, and jungle, and crossed numerous streams! It was actually pretty fun and a beautiful change of scenery- BUT, our feet got super wet!! When we crossed the Whitewater River we had stopped after the crossing to change our socks so our feet didn’t die, and at the first stream crossing we spent a considerable amount of time trying to find a way across without wetting our feet, but eventually we gave up and just started walking through.

Graphic image 😦 baby bobcat?

Around mile 228 we ran into Mantra who was setting up her tent with Brooks (now maybe Cascadia?) and a gal named Doodle. (Oh! I forgot! When we passed Raspberry a few days prior she had asked if I was going to go by the trail name Marco Polo! I said I’d try it on, and when I introduced myself as Marco Polo to one guy {actually, I think it was 12pack?} He said, “oh! I heard that story, that’s sick!!” – so I thought I’d keep it..but I have since decided not to!!)

We were tempted to camp with them, but carried on through swamp and creeks to our goal: mile 229! We quickly set up camp and enjoyed a romantic head-lamp lit dinner of cold-soaked mashed potatoes. Nomnomnom

Happinsss is: stumbling upon the amazing guys at the Mesa Wind Farm!! Not only do they supply cold water and air conditioning for hot, smelly, thru- hikers AND have snacks for sale, they also have been known to put out quite the spread for us!! While we were there they grilled up sausages for everyone, and we have heard that in the morning they serve coffee, fresh fruit, and doughnuts!

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