Hiking With Jason

Detached From Reality

Day 53: Dreaming of Mammoth

Day 53 – 6/13/16

3.5ish miles on Cascade valley alternate to Mammoth 903.3

Total miles: 13ish miles

Packing up in the morning was very difficult. Everything was still wet and it was very cold. Trying to stuff my tent in its stuff sack was hard. My fingers were ice cold and not working correctly. We started up the trail back to the PCT to Purple Lake. It was about a 1,700 foot climb over 3 miles or so. I was in a better mood and hopeful my camera would work. I planned on getting rice and letting it sit in a bag of rice over night. If that didn’t work then I would upgrade my phone to take better pictures since my Galaxy S5 is terrible.

We got to Purple Lake which is only 10 miles from the Mammoth Pass trail. Purple Lake sits at 10,000 feet so we were back up into elevations with snow. Luckily the snow wasn’t constant and was just patchy.



We set out and had to climb up another 500 feet. As we got closer to the trail junction my left foot started to hurt more. My foot has been bothering me the last couple days. I believe it is the tendon on the top of the foot. It hurts going up hill and big steps going down. I took 800mg of ibuprofen but it wasn’t helping. A few times a pain shot up my leg from the top of my foot and I would lose my footing.




We got to the trail junction and within a minute we saw 7 people. People definitely not thru hikers even though they had packs. I can just tell by the size of their pack and the crap strapped to the outside. When we got closer to the top of the pass I checked my phone to see if I had service. I did. My phone started blowing up. I called my mom.

As I was just starting to talk to my mom Mad Dog’s wife walked up. Mad Dog introduced us and his wife, Alice, took a picture of 5 Star, Mad Dog, and I. We continued on and 20 minutes or so later we rounded a corner and there was a giant parking lot fullbof cars and people. Oh my.

We walk down to the parking lot and stuff our smelly selves and gear into the car. We start driving down the street and I’m seeing the most amount of people I’ve seen in the last Month. People and cars everywhere.

We drive to Vons so that I can get rice. Being in the store is overwhelming. Food every where. People everywhere walking slowly. I wander around looking for rice. 5 Star grabs a couple 2 liters of soda and a cherry pie. We buy our stuff and head back to the car in the packed parking lot.

We head to a pizza place called Zpizza. My guide book has a note that says this place is pretty good. I order the pizza I’ve been dreaming of the last couple weeks. Sausage, mushroom, garlic, and spinach. I was so happy.


After lunch Alice and Mad Dog dropped us off at Motel 6. We got into our room and we immediately took showers. Later we went to The Local Frijole for dinner. I got a chicken chimichanga. It was decent.


After dinner we walked over to the pizza place called Johns Pizzaworks and got a milkshake to go. We walked backed to the room and spent the rest of the night relaxing and watching TV.


  1. Welcome to civilization.

  2. Love your honesty, especially about the rare hikers who are making a bad name for the trail. Too bad they can’t just stay home and get high and obnoxious. Your candor is refreshing. I made my first attempt at the PCT in 1980…only got as far as the Mojave desert (too young and too much snow that year). Going to try in another year and your notes are keeping it real…Thanks. Good luck.

    • Thanks for reading. I feel it’s my duty to be open and honest. Every day isn’t sunshine and rainbows. It’s hard work and a lot of times it’s down right miserable.

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