Logging Road(1493.9) to Kettlebelly Trail Junction(1499.2) 5.3 Miles
I was really glad that I did not camp on the actual road last night. I found a sheltered spot just off of the road. At around three-thirty this morning two big logging trucks came rumbling down the dirt road. Since that woke me up I gazed up at the stars until I drifted off to sleep. I woke up again at six and sprang to life. It was a town day. I didn't waste any time getting back into the trail.
I hurried along the trail. I wasn't moving as fast as usual. My feet and legs were a still a little sore from yesterday. I haven't had a proper town day since S. Lake Tahoe, over two and a half weeks ago. I was dreaming about all the food that I would eat. Mt. Shasta is located about fourteen miles off of the trail. To get there involves hitching from a few possible different locations. I had planned on hitching from a frontage road next to Interstate Five, but I changed my mind as I hiked. I got a text message from The Wolf. It was not good news. He has been battling shin splints since the desert and ever since Sierra City they have gotten really bad. He was forced to make the difficult decision of getting off of the trail. I wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors. He had a resupply package sent to a gas station just off of the trail. I wasn't planning on hitching from this spot, but Wolf offered to let me keep his resupply box. It saves me the hassle and expense of resupplying when I get to town. I changed my plans to include stopping at the store to pick up his package. To make this happen I had to walk a 2.5 mile side trail. It was an easy walk and only added a little bit of time to my morning.
The lady at the store hassled me a little about picking up a package that did not belong to me. I appreciated her being hesitant to give me a package that did not belong to me. Since I was able to describe some unique markings on the box she finally let me have it. The store was located right next to the interstate and I quickly got a ride. The very first car to go by stopped for me. It was a really nice guy named, Dana and his young daughter named, Alex. Him and his wife are outdoor enthusiasts and he tries to go out of his way to pick up hikers.
I made it into town around ten-thirty. My first stop was the grocery store. I found a spot to go through Wolf's box. There was a ton of food. He had made his own dehydrated meals before the trail and I'm really looking forward to trying them out. The only thing I had to buy was Carnation Essentials Instant Breakfast packs and some Sour Patch Kids candy. There was enough food in Wolf's box to last me through another resupply. Initially I was going to put the excess into a hiker box, but I would later decide to send it ahead to my next stop. Once I was finished at the grocery store I went looking for lunch. I didn't have to look very far. The pizza place next door, Round Table Pizza, had an All You Can Eat(AYCE) lunch buffet. It wasn't the best pizza I've ever had, but there was a lot of it. I sat down at a table as soon as they opened. There was a tv on right next to my table. I shocked to discover that the Olympics were on. I had completely forgotten that they were being held this summer. I'm more than a little bummed that I can't follow along. I really enjoy the Olympic Games. Hey Hannibal and The General, can you DVR a few of the men's and women's soccer games for me?
I stayed at the pizza place for almost three hours eating pizza and watching the Olympics. I definitely came out a winner in the AYCE game.
Check in at the motel was at one o'clock. I was there at one o'clock on the dot. I had a long list of chores to accomplish in town and I wanted to be efficient for a change. My only requirement for lodging was that the room had to have a bathtub. I needed to find and locate a tiny pinprick hole in my sleeping pad. When I called to reserve my room the owner said that none of his rooms had a bathtub. I inquired again when I checked in. This time I offered up some details about my predicament. I think he felt sorry for me and said that he did have one room with a tub, but he doesn't usually give this room to hikers. I promised to clean up after myself and he agreed to rent me the room. Once I checked in I lost my will to get anything done. All I wanted to do was lie in bed and watch tv. Instead I called home and talked to my mom for awhile. Then I got down to business. After much difficulty I found the hole in my pad and patched it up. I began charging all of my electronics. I took a long shower. This might be the dirtiest I have ever been. It took me so long to get my feet clean that I had to sit down in the shower and really scrub them. I almost resorted to using a Brillo pad. I cleaned out my pack and got all of my clothing together so I could do laundry. Doing my laundry turned into a huge ordeal. The washing went fine, but the drying took forever. I think putting all of my clothes on a laundry line outside would have been faster. As I waited for the dryer to finish I ran into a few of my friends, Skippy and iRobot. I haven't seen them since just after VVR. It was nice to catch up.
When my clothes finally finished I went back to my room. I got to talk to my brother, Anthony, for awhile. I haven't been able to talk to him much since I've been in the trail. It was a nice treat to chat with him. I spent the rest of the night fixing gear, doing research, and trying to do some online shopping. My hiking shirt is starting to fall apart. I really need a new one, but I couldn't get myself to spend $75 on a hiking shirt that will just get destroyed again. The problem is that I love my Smartwool tshirt, but Smartwool is really expensive. I looked at buying an Icebreaker brand shirt, they are wool but about half of the price. I know it is stupid and it doesn't matter, but Icebreaker was sold out of purple. I always hike in a purple shirt. It is kind of my thing. It felt like bad mojo to switch now so I just didn't buy anything. I didn't get all of my chores done, but I did accomplish all of the important top priority things. The post office doesn't open until 8:30, so I plan on sleeping in a little.
"I have this theory that if one person can go out of their way to show compassion, then it will start a chain reaction of the same. People will never know how far a little kindness can go."
- Rachel Joy Scott (1981-1999), Student, First Victim of The Columbine High School Massacre