Fuller Ridge Campsite(190.5) to Ziggy and the Bear(210.8) 20.3 Miles
Today was slightly brutal and all fantastic. When I woke up at 5:15 is was still really cold out. I had to give my self a pep talk to get out of my sleeping bag and put on my smelly hiking clothes. We had a 20 mile day planned and all 20 miles were downhill. I was ready to go before everyone else so I hiked out alone. I enjoy hanging out with the group, but I really enjoy hiking by myself. There was still ice on the ground from the storm last night, but it warmed up quickly. The views today were stunning. Part of the time you could see the desert floor and the rest of the time you could see the peak of San Jacinto.
I had the trail to myself for the first hour of the day. Eventually I caught up with Spice and Cap(The Traveling Circus/Packing It Out Guys). They hike really fast, but are super fun to hike with. By following in their jetstream I managed to crush the first ten miles in three hours. They decided to take a break just before the 200 mile marker, so I kept going. I was really excited to break 200 miles. On the AT I made most of the mile markers. Out here I think they will all be done for me. I'm not sure how I feel about that. So far it has been nice to just snap a quick picture and move on, but I do miss they creativity of making them on my own.
I took my first break around mile 15. The heat was intense and my feet felt like they were on fire. I didn't give myself much of a break. I could feel my energy levels dropping and I knew that the last 5 miles would be the most difficult.
The last 5 miles was through actual desert. I thought it was hot before, but I was wrong. It was 110 degrees walking on the desert floor. At one point I was just dragging my poles behind me and plodding along.
I arrived at Ziggy and the Bear at 2:30. I did 20.3 miles in eight hours. I was pretty pleased with myself. Ziggy and the Bear are trail angels that have a house just off the trail. They offer shade, water, porta potties, resupply, and a place to sleep. They are 100% donation based. The back yard has a solar shower, sinks to wash clothes, and large pavilion style tents to sleep under. Even in the shade it was 98 degrees. The rest of the group arrived just after me. We signed up for the morning shuttle to the bus station. Unfortunately, we have to skip 52 miles of the trail due to a fire closure. Ziggy and the Bear have a network of trail Angels in place to shuttle us to the bus station over an hour away. From there we will take a bus to Big Bear Lake one and a half hours away. I'm disappointed to miss this section of trail, but it can't be avoided. I hope to return to this area after I finish to make up the missing miles.
We were able to have pizza delivered here, so we are all going to bed satisfied. Tomorrow should be an interesting day.
Two or three things I know for sure, and one is that I'd rather go naked than wear the coat the world has made for me.