PCT Day 39

May 21, 2019

Mile 478.2 to mile 493, 14.8 PCT miles, no off trail miles
Running total: 518.8 miles
We woke up in the Magical Manzanita Forest with rain…again. We stayed in the tent until 0730, only convincing ourselves to leave our shelter because of the promise of delicious pancakes. They were, in fact, so delicious that I might have eaten 5, all before taking a picture…

Matthew managed to drop his syrup-covered fork on my shoe- bear bait!!

We also had coffee, tea, fruit, and cookies. Nomnomnom.
We took our time this rainy morning, trying to avoid the day and thoroughly enjoying the comforts of Casa de Luna.

Here at Casa de Luna you are expected to don a Hawaiian shirt upon arrival.

Terrie gives everyone a PCT bandana if they dance…

We earned our class bandanas
Matt got an ass grab when this pic was taken…it wasn’t by me.

Terrie displays painted rocks throughout her property- each hiker has the opportunity to paint their own.

Lies!!

Apparently a lot of PCT hikers are artists. I am not.

Peanut skull 😦
I WAS able to represent my hero Will O, painting a Will Power rock!! (With watery white paint…bah)

Everyone patiently waited for Picasso to finish her work, then we piled into our ride back to the trail. It was chilly but thankfully had stopped raining. Our plan: hike just under 15 miles to a tent site that can fit a few tents…
We started around 1215 with another sleepy climb and SO much poison oak!

Just before mile 486 Matt and I happened upon a good lunch spot, where we were joined by Big Momma, Arc, and Joe Dirt. We sat for a while (more than an hour!) before starting the next climb…

About 1.5miles after lunch we came to the next water source, where we had to load up for a 17 mile water carry ’cause our next few water sources SUCKED! Comments included:

“For the love of God! Fill up at the spring…this is the worst water I had so far.”
“Looks disgusting even after filtering”
“Well this water is certain colorful”
“Greenish water.”
“Smells bad”
“A bottle of 2019 Maxwell camp guzzler? Excellent choice, my friend! Aged in a concrete cistern in Southern California, this full-bodied yet highly-quaffable selection is reminiscent of stale roobios tea with rich earthy overtones and subtle hints of tobacco, manure, and drowned rat.”
“Dead bear inside covered in worms”
“Smells like something died in there.”
“Dead bear.”
While adding 8.8lbs to our already heavy bags was back-breaking, it sure beat dead-bear water & drowned rat water…
As we continued our hike up it got colder and windier- and the trail was sprinkled with poodle dog bush in addition to the poison oak!

I was tired, getting cold, and dreading setting up our tent in the wind. I practically hiked with our map app open, watching the small blue dot move across the red trail, counting the tenths of miles we had to go to our planned camp site.

When we arrived, Matt and I found a few open spots under dead trees- totally not ideal, considering the wind and all of the big branches we saw scattered on the ground. When Big Momma arrived she and I scouted out a site .1mile ahead, which we decided was better.
We leave out a pole and a hat to notify a trail fam member that we have gone off trail!
Although a bear had recently been sited nearby and apparently stole packs from tent vestibules, we were cold and decided to eat in our tents and keep our fingers crossed…
Happiness is: setting up our tents and crawling into our sleeping bags to enjoy our hot dinners just as it began to rain…it was perfect timing! And, not getting eaten by a bear!

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