mi 266 (Big bear Lake) to mi 342 (Cajon Pass)
DAY 20 - 266 to 285
Izzy, the 18year old graduate who is walking the pct just before she is going to college in August, was just around the corner of our Honey Bear Lodge in Big Bear Lake and happen to be there with her grandma, who happen to had a car with her. So after we tried to eat all the mountains of food that we had bought two days earlier, she gave us a ride to the start of the trail again.
We were happy to be active again. The king size beds, showers, food...where great, but it was just enough. Off we went. We started hiking again and it felt great. We left late, but we easily made 20miles before dark and slept cowboy style again under the stars. While I was sleeping like a princes, the others were a bit cold in there sleepingbags. Even Ivo, who has this amazing "Onesie" (he looks like Spider-Man in it: if I can I'll try to convince him that a picture is absolute necessary to picture the hiker subculture ;p ) was cold.
DAY 21 - 285 to 304
A bit sleep deprived, we started walking again. This time my blisters started to grow. I seem to get a new one every 100 miles (which is pretty decent considering black nails and infected wounds of others..). This day I couldn't get forward. Every step hurt and as I tried to not step on the sore parts of my feet, I started to get punished for my silly walk. Mr Backwise was still flying over the hills, without any problems,while my mood was getting worse, with every step I took. By the time that I felt the utmost selfpitty and felt that I had to sit down and cry with a bag of chocolate next to me, I heard honeystick calling me. I looked down, and saw that she was weaving at me, with next to her a sparkling fresh creek! I went down, took my narrow shoes from my swollen feet, got rid of my stinky warm hiker clothes and by the time the others arrived as well, I ran towards the water and jumped into the ice cold creek. Within a few minutes, everybody was splashing around like crazy and enjoying this magical thing called water.
After that I felt way better and we even got a 19 mile day out of it. We found a nice stop and didn't even think about getting the tent up. Cowboy camping it is..
DAY 22 - 304 to 328
This day was a looooong day. But a very nice one as well. Within 1,5h we arrived at the hot springs that we were actually aiming for one day earlier. Ivo shinsplins and the ladies blisters kept us from saving this as a warm early morning bath. And so we did. Two / three hours we bubbled around in this little paradise, where the tourism unfortunately leaves to much traces though.
As thru-hikers, we have been taught to leave no trace. Everything we take with us, should be taking care of with the least impact on nature. We even make decent catholes for poop and carry our used toilet paper with us till the next trashcontainer. (No it's not disgusting, double pack it and you are totally fine). Here, next to these lovely springs, where hot water comes from deep out of the earth and where the creek around it, is a important water source for lots of animals and (thru)hikers AND where big signs say: no camping, no campfires, leave no trace... Just 10 feet from these signs and water, you find toilet paper, human facis, sanitary pads, cans, plastic bags... next to a bunch of camping families and friends who obvesily had have a campfire party the night before. It's really irritating and a bit sad to see this. :(
We enjoyed it anyways. After this we walked further and passed by some very aggressively written graffiti in a bit less pretty region. In the middle we were very hot again and made a break to eat and check out our blisters. Just as I wanted to renew my moleskin, something crowl into my shirt. I directly thought about these bad Lyme ticks, so I jumped up trying to get the thing out of my shirt and of course it bite me. And it wasn't a tick, I don't know for sure what it did was. It's needle was still in me and left me a nice sore pain which stretched from my neck till almost my fingertips. While I was jumping around Felix and Tuntone started undressing me, I had to laugh, because it actually was a sort of funny situation. It turned out to be all fine, I just have a metal shoulder now and I hope that next time, I will act more accordingly; stay calm and you might not get bitten. Well, I ll do my best.
Because of this we got delayed a bit, still made it to silverwoodbridge before sunset. Here we thought to see a nice bridge where we could have dinner in the sunset, but it turned out to be a ugly paved road with green stinky water underneath it. We had dinner next to the road in a less windy spot. Our non-cooked diner, did taste like ***** and it was cold. Still we were having fun out there. Feeling like some happy homeless hippie hikers. After the break we walked on and met...TRAILMAGIC! Bananas, grapes, chocolate an water!
After that we all felt like superman and hiked on into the night. We past a huge lake and finnaly arrived at a parking with a restroom and picknick table. I was happy to be there, because I was almost falling a sleep while walking the last mile. Felix did took very good care of me though. Holding my hand and made sure that I could see al the ridges by shining extra light with his flashlight. What a gentleman..
The next morning Malibu found us again. With him, we walked towards milkshakes and tacos. The idea was to get as much food as possible (if you didn't noticed before, we need / want to eat a lot. 4000 calories a day is minimum). And so we did. We all ordered the 870calorie milkshake and fries at mc Donald's, then we moved on to Taco Bell to get a quessodilla and finally finished in the subway with a foot big sandwich and a 1,2 liter soda cup. (I couldn't resist laughing as Felix ordered a large soda and got this "bucket". My small cup was a large Europe size).
At subway, we read the weather report which said that storm would come into the mountain area of San Bernardino, just where we wanted to summit. Snowstorm with 9inch of snow within one day. This would mean very cold, dangerous windy situations at 9000 feet. So we went where all the hikers went. At a motel called "best western" next to highway 15. Very romantic, with tankstations and fastfoodchains as foodsupliers, but we have a jacuzzi and kingsize beds, so we will manage ;) .
We do not really like the situation, we want to continue our hike, but like they say: better save than sorry.