Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Day 7- A Song Of Fire And Ice

May 09, 2016
Stealth Site(80.4) to Barrel Springs(101.1)  20.7 Miles 

Today I hit my first milestone, 100 miles!!! It felt much easier than my first hundred miles on the AT. That doesn't mean it was all easy. The desert weather has been killer. It has truly been the story of fire and ice. Mt. Laguna was freezing and wet, but other than that it has been hot during the day and cold at night. 
I was up and on the trail by 6 am this morning. I'm trying to take advantage of the cooler morning temps. By 10:30 am it was been warm, by 11 it is just plain hot. A lot of people have the goal of hiking 10 miles by 10 am. I actually hiked 11 by 10. 
Desert in the early morning light

My goal this morning was to make it to a maintained water cache 11 miles away. All water caches are supposed to be treated as unreliable water sources, but this particular one is reliable. Some wonderful person drives pallets of water up to a remote spot in the wilderness. I am very thankful that they take the time and expense to help out hikers. Without that water source I would have had a 20 mile dry stretch. 
Empty bottles at the 3rd Gate water cache

I had planned on taking an extended break here, but I wanted to make it a little farther before it got too hot. About 30 minutes later it was blistering hot out. I stopped for a quick snack break and decided it was time to break out my umbrella. I was glad that I did. It immediately felt 10 degrees cooler out.
 My umbrella

Other than how hot it was today it was a relatively easy day. I made it to camp by 3 pm. I could have kept going, but I'm still trying to take it easy and not push it too hard. When I first started my body was done after 12 miles. Now I can comfortably go 16-17 miles. Anything after that is pretty tough physically.
My view for most of the day

Desert Bloom

There are a lot of people in camp tonight. Most of the 15 people here are mostly new faces. I've been very surprised at how antisocial people have been. There hasn't really been much sense of trail community. When somebody new walks into camp or a water source they are largely ignored. I'm hoping I'm just in a strange bubble. Tonight is better than it has been, but it still isn't quite like the AT. 

Super stoked to hit 100 miles

I'm trying something new tonight, cowboy camping. Cowboy camping is when you just layout your sleeping pad and sleeping bag. The weather is so dry out here that most people do this every night. I like my tent so I'm not sure how often I will do this, but I figured I should at least try it once. 
Cowboy Camping

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, small-mindedness and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.  Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.
- Mark Twain


  1. I like the umbrella. How did you secure it to the pack (assuming that you aren't holding it, that would grow old pretty quickly)? Also, do you find you eat different things than on the AT because of the heat?

    1. I use a combination of bungee ties and camelback hydration tube clips. I only hold it when it's really windy out. So far I'm not doing coffee in the morning. I find that I don't have much appetite during the day, so I eat more at night. Also snickers aren't doing too well in the heat

    2. The hiking umbrella is the bomb.com!! Airlick(lol) you gotta try one chicaria. It is wonderful for rain AND sun. The outside(silver) has a 50 SPF coating to block the sun.

  2. I was thinking the same thing, Airlock. Katie I am enjoying your beautiful pictures. I watched your site for several days, waiting for you to start posting. (At least I could see your daily progress moving along on the Where's Katie link.) We went away for the weekend, and now had to play catch up for 7 days. Lol. Glad you're back on and having a successful adventure. Hope your feet do better on this one.

  3. Loving the blog! I've got some sad news though, Baltimore Jack died. I just read it today :(. Glad I got to meet him last year on the AT, such a nice guy.

    1. I heard about Baltimore Jack. It was very sad news. He was a trail legend and I was glad that we got a chance to meet him

  4. I'm so sorry to hear that you're finding the hikers less social than on the AT - hopefully that will change! Really glad you have the umbrella!! Carry on Yoda!