15.2 miles (Miles 1148.7 – 1163.9)
Just past Tinker’s knob – PCT mile 1163.9
The morning’s hike was once again motivated by civilization, that once we arrived into I found myself immediately ready for the trail again… except for saying goodbye to Aloha. I’ve been missing that guy so much lately, and today’s short resupply was hard.
We hiked pretty steady, planning on taking a break once we got to Donner’s Pass at Hwy 40. We started seeing a whole bunch of dayhikers, and a lot of them asked where we were headed. It’s a fun question. When we reply, “Canada,” some nod and say something like, “Right on!” Sometimes they give us a blank stare followed by, “Canada? Well… where’d ya’ start?” Then we say, “Mexico” and they are usually blown away and really excited about it. It’s really fun to talk to both – those that are familiar with the trail and those that aren’t. The best part about the conversations today – two different people said they wouldn’t have guessed we were thru-hikers because we looked clean and didn’t stink! Wow, even on our fourth day out! To that, I say, “Right on!”
Once we were almost down to the highway, a guy came around a corner and says to me, “Hey! I recognize you… I’m following your blog!” It was trail angel Reno Dave! He offered a cold drink, conveniently packed in ice, inside a bear canister, in his backpack – he was hiking out to hand out drinks to hikers! Thanks, Reno Dave! When we got to the parking lot he had water, apples and more drinks for hikers, too. Awesome! (I wish I’d have gotten a photo with him, but forgot! I’m bummed about that! Reno Dave… if we meet again, I won’t forget!)
Once in the parking lot we met a couple of PCT class of ’03 thru-hikers. Potato Picker, The Northerner and his fiancee, Faceplant were waiting for Filthy and Junko to come off trail. Filthy is also an ’03 hiker… back out for more. Faceplant gave us a trail treat – dehydrated strawberry shortcake! Holy yummy, Batman! We’re planning on making it tomorrow – can’t wait! Potato Picker also gave us each a beer. They invited to hang out with them at their cabin tonight, and we were really close to taking them up on the offer but decided to shoot through and keep making our way to Sierra City. Thanks so much for the goodies, ’03’ers!
We hiked on towards I-80 where we planned to meet Aloha for a quick resupply, then we were going to head out right away again. It was a great plan, and I’m glad we stuck to that plan, but it was kind of tough. Seeing Aloha for a few hours in the middle of the day was great… but it tempted me to want to stay. I know I see him a lot, but I still miss the guy every time I go out on another stretch. This one’s just two days, so I’ll be excited to see him and spend some more time with him again… as always!
He did bring us into Truckee to eat at Burger Me, which was so freakin’ busy that it made me anxious to be back in the woods. The food was great, though.
We resupplied on a picnic table at a rest area where the PCT passes, and we head back out for a few miles.
We were maybe going to sleep at the Peter Grubb hut, but it was closed down for repairs – it’s a really cool-looking winter ski hut. The two-story pit toilet was my favorite part. I didn’t even use them, but I certainly appreciated the design. I’m not sure if there’s a functional reason to have two stories, or if it’s just in fun. (I found out later the upper toilet is for winter – deep snow – brilliant!)
We found a cute little spot to sleep tucked in a patch of dwarfed-looking pine trees. I had chili Ramen for dinner and hot cocoa for desert. It felt like a busy day, and I’m ready for sleep and maybe a big day tomorrow.
Tonight I love the woods. Home.
Thanks for reading and being a part of my journey!