500.5 to 517.6 (Hikertown)
It turns out that the dirt road that was so perfect in our tipsy exhausted state was actually on a slope. My night was spent sliding down my groundsheet towards my feet and I kept having to crawl back up again!
It was still so awesome sleeping under the stars and I think my tent will be getting as little use as possible (weather permitting).
Everyone is up pretty early and off. It’s a drizzly day which starts with a small climb up and not many water sources. I have enough water to get me to the horse trail camp spring at mile 508, just in time for second breakfast (second breakfast is an important meal and should exist everywhere. Not to be confused with mornos/elevenses which come afterwards). The rain is soft and actually nice to hike in. I put my pack cover on but don’t worry about the jacket and enjoy the cool cloud that surrounds me.
The horse camp has a table – gasp! One by one Tara, Jae, Kyle, Sam, Ceili and Chloe all turn up and crowd around the table at the campsite for brekkie, and then depart in the same fashion.
It’s a nice descent through some pretty flowers and trees. There’s no great rush but I enjoy trying out my new ‘run down the hills’ technique. My podcasts are plugged in and it’s a lovely hike.
Eventually I make it out to the road crossing, and find the strange little world of ‘Hiker Town’ on the other side.
It is simply bizarre. It is a collection of little buildings that house beds, set up to resemble a little town of sorts. There is a flower shop, a prison, a doctors office, a town hall….it’s equal parts fascinating and creepy.
Chicken Fat and Lobo are there, as is speedy Kyle and the Canadian Honeymooners Snack Attack and Bambi.
I cook some yummy tabouleh for lunch that Little Foot and Raven gave me back in Wrightwood, and then they turn up at hikertown! Yay great to see them.
There are big clouds rolling in, but it is hot. I try and nap with little success -too hot and too many flies. We all congregate around the porch of the ‘town hall’ and try to hide from the fat drops of rain that are starting to fall.
Our next terrain is along the LA Aqueduct.and we mull over our options while lounging and clearly not wanting to movie. It’s going to be long and hot with 18 miles of no water and fully exposed.
The original plan is to start the hike tonight, but rumour abounds that it is horribly windy and dangerous to camp on as cars zoom along the road at night. Many hikers do the whole thing at night because of the exposure. So we have our excuse to stay put and be lazy and a few of us plan on a crazy early start in the morning instead. Then the fabulous ‘trail provides’ and we are offered a slack pack to Cottonwood creek! This means taking as little as we want with us and the rest will be dropped off in 18miles for us to collect. I still have to take my pack to house my water and snacks, but empty everything else into a garbage bag. YAYAYAY! This is amazing and means we can start little later and will be walking like Olympic speed walkers! ZOOM ZOOM!
I find myself a place to sleep in the garage, along with Ceili, Chloe, Rodrigo and some new friends Attila, Yorkie and Alex. We attempt a movie on Rodrigos mini iPad but alas it does not want to work.
So off to sleep I go, excited by all the speediness that will come in the morning.