Mile 18.9 to 36.8
Last night was a full moon. It was so bright! I didn’t sleep very well. I tossed and turned all night. 5:20 am rolls around and I see 5 Star getting up. I start packing up and eat a Belvita biscuit. About 100 feet away is a buck and a small doe. Grazing by the trail. They kept an eye out for us but basically ignored us as they made their way up alongside the trail.
5 Star and I are ready and Tami says she has to take care of some business and meet us down the trail. 5 Star and I make our way down the trail and pass pretty close to the buck. He looked at us and slowly walked off. He was a big boy.
We see the couple with the dog up on a hill. The trail winds around and runs close to them. We say good morning and continue on as they finish packing up. We keep walking and after about 30 minutes we step to the side to wait a bit for Tami. The couple comes by and we talk for a bit. Tami shows up and gives the dog, Everest, a bunch of pets. The couple moves on and we set off a few minutes later.
As we are going up a hill we see this yellow container. Jim picks it up and egg yolk pours out. Its an egg carrying case. Who brings eggs when back packing? That’s just crazy.
We continue to climb and climb. Eventually we reach the high point for the day. The couple with the dog are there taking a break
We come out of the forest into a burn area. It is hot. Hot and exposed. Not a sliver of shade in sight. I get about 3/4 of the way through before I’m running on empty. I want to take a break but we are about a mile from the fire station that is our water source. The altitude is really hard on me. At this point we were around 7,500 feet. I’m used to 1,200. On the PCT we were gradually climbing over the weeks. By the time I entered the Sierra I was used to 6k to 7k feet.
Tami stops on a hill and uses her sat phone to call her husband. 5 Star and I continue down the hill towards the road that takes us to the fire station. By the time I reach the road I am so tired. The fire station is only an 1/8th mile or so away. I somehow make my way over. In the front is shaded. I set my pack down, pull out my pad, and just sit. It is so hot.
I lay there leaning against my pack cooling down for a bit before walking over to get some water out of the spigot. Thankfully, the water is cold. I pour some on my head and wash my face. Feels so good.
I head back and pull out some food. 5 Star calls his wife so I checked my phone to see if I have service too. I do and so I check some messages and call my parents and talk to them for a bit.
Tami shows up and sits next to me. I start eating my food and I put some propel powdered mix into my bottle. I drink a bit and instantly start feeling bad. Something about it hurts my stomach. I feel like I have acid reflux. I look for my tums and sure enough they are not there. I forgot to put them in my pack after sticking them in baggies.
After about 20 minutes the couple with the dog shows up. Everest runs right over to Tami to get some loving. Everest makes the rounds and lays down by me. Her dad comes over and takes off her little blue booties. He brings her back by them and gets her some water. Their names are Garreth and Kari.
I try and upload the Day 0 and Day 1 post but I don’t have a good enough connection to upload the pictures. It uploaded some but then quit.
As we are laying there the guy with the horses comes by. He goes to the water for quite awhile. A couple mountain bikers and a runner pass by to get water and then take off. Meanwhile the smelly hikers are sprawled out relaxing in the shade of the building.
The horseman comes back and we talk to him. His name is Joe and he is from Oklahoma. He rides Shortstack and leads Old Dan. We talk about the riding on the trail for a bit before he takes off.
Another hiker shows up a bit later. We saw her on the first day. She passed us while we were hanging out under a pavilion. We eventually passed her just before the river. She was about 2 miles from the river but was setting up for the night.
She walks over to the water and we don’t see her for awhile. I get up to get some water and she is sitting by the water eating. She is barely in any shade. I say hi and she comments how hot it is. We talk for a bit and then I head back to my spot. I pack up my stuff and tell Tami I’m going to soak my hat in the cold water. She thinks that’s a great idea so we both go back to the water spigot. I soak my hat and talk to Dana for a bit. We say good bye and pick up our packs.
We cross a road and head back onto,the trail. Except its on an old forest service road that is closed. We walk for about 1t minutes when we start feeling some rain drops. Not a lot. Just enough to feel good and not soak us. About 5 minutes later 5 Star says “Did you see that lightning?” Right as Tami and I are saying “no” thunder cracks overhead. Its pretty loud and startled Tami. We keep walking and the next few thunders are more rolling.
We get to a campground that has a pit toilet that looked to be just cleaned as a white forest service truck was driving away. 5 Star investigates first while Tami and I sit at a picnic table. 5 Star comes back and says its clean and smells like cleaner. I go and take care of some business also since passing up a pit toilet is just a bad decision.
We continue on uphill. After our long breaks going up isnt too bad for about 2 miles before I start to slow down. Luckily, it is overcast and nice and cool. We make our way around a couple mountains. As we get to the top of one we see a Colorado Trail sign with one trail runner hanging from it. Some ones going to be a sad camper.
Our water source after the fire station was about 6 miles away. We get close and we are keeping an eye out but dont see it. We see a seasonal stream a couple tenths of a mile further and head for it. When we get to it the water is stagnant and we decide to pass it up. We walk a bit further and I let them know I need a break. The altitude is kicking my ass.
We lay down and eat. Tami makes some lasagna. Dont get too excited. Its Mountain House dehydrated lasagna. I have a few bites because it smells pretty good. We hang out for about an hour. Just as we were about to get up I see Everest round the corner. She spots Tami and runs right for her. She gets lots of loving and then lays down to chew on some sticks. Garrett and Kari tell us how about 15 minutes after we left it started pouring. We must have just missed it and only gotten the edge of the shower.
About a minute later 3 more hikers, including Dana, walk by. This was surprising since we havent see anyone else since the Fire station.
There is a creek by this road about 1.5 miles away so we start down the trail. We come to a road and see up the road is a big meadow and Joe and the horses are there. I also spotted a pit toilet. My stomach had start to gurgle and burble for the last few minutes. I thought about goimg to the lit toilet but it was about a 1/8th mile away. Too far.
We walk a bit more and see the creek. By this point my stomach is rumbling and I’m gassy. I dont feel good at all. I tell 5 Star that I regret passing up the pit toliet. I get my water and tell them I’m heading up the trail to find a spot to go. I cross the road and see a spot up a hill. I drop my pack and grab my tools. I start walking up and I’m immediately feeling worst. My stomach is making all sorts of noise. I dig a hole and do my business. Not much came out and I only feel a bit better.
I head back and 5 Star and Tami are standing next to my pack. I tell them how I’m feeling. 5 Star thinks its the altitude causing stomach and digestive issues.
We cotinue up for about 500 feet before I have to sit down. Going up makes it worse. Especially with my hip belt digging into my gut. Tami and 5 Star talk about the various meds Tami had and what might help. I can’t focus and just take what Tami gives me. I think it was Imodium but I’m not sure. We continue for about half a mile at a slow pace.
As I’m slowly making my way up a small incline I see Tami and 5 Star standing by a tree holding a phone. I walk up and 5 Star holds out the phone and says some one is going to be sad. Looks like someone dropped their phone. We try to access it but it is password protected. On the lock screen we see a notification from the Whatsapp app. It looks like its in German and the message came from a Fabian. We decide to carry it to Frisco and then decide what to do with it.
5 Star points to a flat spot and asks if it looks good or if I want to go another mile or so. Its starting to drizzle at this point and I’m feeling terrible so I say this spot is good. Right as we pull our tents the rain picks up. I put up my tent for the first time in almost a year. I messed it up a bit and had to make a lot of adjustments.
I throw my stuff into the tent as it’s starting to pour. I blow up my pad and just lay there in misery. Eventually laying down helps in releasing the build up of gasses and I start to feel a bit better. After about 30 minutes it starts raining. 5 Star comes over and gives me a melatonin.
Tomorrow is all uphill. I’m hoping I feel better tomorrow. I am worried that we will be reaching 10k feet. Hopefully another night at 7,500 feet will help.