We’ve made it to Julian, CA after a solid 5 days. Starting with a ~15 mile/day pace seems to work well – as does hiking from about 6:30-13:00ish. It’s amazing how easy it is to switch into the natural circadian cycle with the sun. I’ve jotted down a few notes and pictures from each day below…
Day 1 – camped at mile 15.4, Hauser Creek. About 25 people at the site, mostly European/Australian with some Scandanavians as well. Everyone uses the metric system, with good reason, guess I’ll have to start thinking in Celsius. Saw a rosy boa (?) and a couple horned lizards, but no rattle snakes yet.
Day 2 – camped at mile 32, Fred Canyon. Started the day with a huge climb out of Hauser Canyon, brutal. Shit is getting real, we are getting into the swing of the backpacking routine, it’s been awhile for all of us. Tons of herpatiles and flowers though – all photos of em by Sara of course.
Day 3 – camped at mile 47.8, exposed site with 60-70mph wind gusts, as best as we could find without side tracking to a campground. Didn’t expect to deal with that much wind, but not surprising at ~6000ft. Good test of how well I can setup the ZPacks Duplex in the wind – it withheld the whole night with the exception of one stake – probably due to the rock I placed over it being a tad too small. I managed to fix it without leaving the tent at least.
Day 5 – mile 77.3, Julian, CA. We got a hotel after a ~13 mile day – it was either that or hitch back out of town and sleep under the bridge. Not a bad option, but the shower and food was welcome after several miles of hiking in full sun. Visited Carmens for a burger and free beer then Mom’s for a free slice of pie and ice cream. Hiker friendly town.
It’s been challenging, simple, and beautiful everyday so far. Hoping that continues, along with my lack of blisters.