Day 115: 14 miles. Agua Dulce to tentsite at mile 2213
We had a perfect breakfast that Nine Beers’ sister and her husband prepared for us. Then we went to resupply in Acton with their car. It was Halloween and we were wearing cat ears when hiking. That made digging a cat hole feel more special.
I had weighed myself and I had again lost weight, about 15 % of my weight. It was no strange I felt constantly tired.
We came to the KOA campsite and I saw you could order pizza delivery there, so that is what I did. Saltlick was again there and he sat for dinner with us and gave us some nachos. We walked together for a couple of hours. It was so warm that we could wear t-shirts in the evening. I was even cowboy camping.
Day 116: 22 miles. Tentsite at mile 2213 to pit toilets at mile 2235.
I was kept awake by a fly that was biting my face. The alarm went on at 05.30 and I was tired when we started walking. It was a crazy climbing day, 5500 feet elevation gain. I was so exhausted I told Nine Beers I’d need to nap. So we took a 20 minutes nap on a slopy hill with our feet on our backpacks.
It was very windy again. Noisy wind is very exhausting for the brain.
It got colder during the day and the weather report said there could be snow at night. We decided to go to a highway that had pit toilets for potential emergency camping.
We had our breakfast, lunch and dinner sitting in the middle of the trail. Coming down to the toilets we saw that there were too many spiders there and had to set up our tents having at least the opportunity to bail out to the spidery toilets if our tents would get soaked.
Day 117: 18 miles. Pit toilets at mile 2235 to Camp Glenwood.
It was raining at night as the weather reoort promised and as it was still raining when our alarms went on at 05.30 we decided to continue sleeping til 7. It was still foggy when we got up and drizzling occasionally. We went to a fire station to get water and had our breakfast gloriously in front of a pit toilet. Nine Beers’ food had been soaked at night unintentionally and I burned a hole in my rainskirt with the gas stove.
We were climbing up the hills without energy although when the sun came out it was beautiful. It was quite cold most of the day and I was mostly hiking with my woolly hat on.
We didn’t make fast progress and therefore decided to make the days hike shorter than usual. It was also going to be record cold the next two nights so we wanted to plan our camps so that we could be in lower elevations – and close to an emergency pit toilet as our tents are not really made for four season weather.
We had lunch by a picnic table where some hunters were finishing their day. It was already freezing when the sun went down. Unfortunately the campsite we came to had the tiniest toilets so that was not an option for emergency camping. We set up our tents on the porches of the private cabin which was a bit challenging for me as I do not have a freestanding tent. It felt still safer to have some kind of a roof over ones head as it seemed it would snow at night.
Day 118: 16 miles. Camp Glenwood to Little Jimmy Campground
We set the alarms at 06.30 as the morning would be cold. Indeed it was 26 F at 7 a.m. and Lord knows what it was ay night. A few snowflakes floated down from the sky and the landscape was foggy. Trees were white in frost and poor Poodle dog bushes seemed to be shivering in the cold.
We were wearing almost all clothes we had and never took of longjohns during thr day. We managed to have lunch in the sun at a campground and dry our damp stuff. Sky and Big bird that I had met in Kennedy Meadows North passed by and they were also complaining about the insanely cold weather and how South California was nit at all easy as they say.
The landscape was beautiful but we were mostly too cold to enjoy it. The panties I had rinsed at the lunch stop froze solid in two hours and water bottles started to freeze. It was also a lot of very steep climbing that made our legs sing hallelujah.
When we reached the beautiful junction to Mount Williamson it started to snow huge flakes. It was cold although the sun was shining. We came down and then made the last crazy climb up to the campground. We tried to make a fire but all the wood was too damp to lit. We had our miserable dinner in the cold evening and drank our emergency whiskies with hot chocolate. The temperature was down to 20 Fahrenheit and we escaped to our tents already after 7 p.m.
The next weeks weather report did not promise much improvement to the weather: snow and very cold temperatures.
Day 119: 12 miles. Little Jimmy Campground to Wrightwood.
It was the coldest night on the trail. We were sleeping with all our clothes and still freezing like crazy. I had to blow up my matress twice and still it was empty when I again woke up. I heard also some noise and thought it was a bear but it was just Sky and Blue Bird getting up. When I woke up again all water bottles and the inside of the tent were frozen solid.
We started hiking at 7 with all our clothes and had to filter some water. We were again very tired but had to climb the mountain going to Baden-Powell summit. We were going to summit it but the trail going there was snowy and there were crazy ice cubes falling of the trees sometimes on us. We were so tired that we decided to skip the summit.
I had some cell service and learned that my sister had to put down the dog she had for nearly 16 years. It was very sad as she was a family member and this news made the day even more miserable.
The plan was to sleep on the trail and to get to Wrightwood the morning after but after studying the map I realized we could hitch to town from an earlier trailhead. I said to Nine Beers: “We could be drinking beers tonight” and she said: “I’m sold!”
We met a guy who thought we were German and hiked down with him. He offered us a ride to Wrightwood and even gave me his sitpad as I had told him I had lost mine.
In Wrightwood we met with Rock Solid at the gear store and there we got a number to a trail angel who could host us. We had a coffee and a pie at a coffee place and free hot dogs at a gas station. A lot of people were asking: “Southbounders?” when they saw us.
There was a Friday market and we met our host with a husky. He took us to his huge house that he had built himself and we made a dinner and drank some beer with him. He had even a hot tub but it was unfortunately too late for us to enjoy that after the dinner.
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Aww, my backyard mountains. Still enjoying your posts. So close to the end. Rain/snow soon. Stay warm.