Hostel Hoedown – Days 25-28

Day 25

Mileage: 406.5 to 430.4

After hiking for a bit we were able to regain cell service for the first time in a few days and set some things up for our trip into Tehachapi. Kelsey’s grandma lives there and her dad is flying in to visit family and see us so we were setting everything up. This is where we will plan to do our very first zero and we honestly can’t wait!

We hiked until we got to a fire station where they had a pit toilet and trash cans and guess who we found? The Northbound Riders crew were set up there and we were elated to see them again. We hadn’t seen them since Paradise Valley Cafe so many days ago but knew we were getting closer as the horse poo on trail was getting fresher.

Two of the horses that are resting off some injuries.

We sat and chatted and enjoyed our lunch in their company and before we knew it two hours had passed and we needed to get moving. It is always such a joy to see them and hear how their journey is going, but the miles won’t walk themselves I suppose.

Kelsey and her best pal, Echo.

We hiked with the setting sun and beautiful views until we got to Messenger Flat Campground, equipped with pit toilets and trash cans (our faves).

Sunset from the trail camp.

Day 26

Mileage: 430.4 to 454.4

This morning we were kind of on a roll and knocking mileage out quickly. It helped that it was such a beautiful day!

Some beautiful view somewhere along the way.

Really nice hiking and some really neat things during the day actually got us to the town of Agua Dulce by 5 p.m. for a nice stay in the Hiker Heaven hostel.

Vasquez Rocks.

The Highway 14 tunnel.

Some of the property.

As soon as we got into Agua Dulce we were immediately waved over by a guy named Fred, who loaded all of our stuff in the truck and brought us straight to the hostel. There we met L-Rod, the owner, and she gave us a quick run down of her beautiful property. She had thought of EVERYTHING: a sewing station to repair gear, a hair cutting station, port-a-pots, a huge hiker box, laundry, showers, you name it, she had thought of it. It was really amazing and wonderfully well done. We even got a private room before we headed back down into town for dinner. It was a wonderful stay!

All of the shoes left by hikers to be donated.

Day 27

Mileage: 454.4 to 478.2

We decided to hike from one really cool hostel to another because we wanted to hit them both. This left us two longer days but we thought it would be worth it. We left Hiker Heaven at 6:15 and walked a mile to get back to trail. We also picked up some gigantic and delicious breakfast sandwiches and ate them on the go. (We never have pictures of food because we’re too busy eating the food; we’ll work on that.) We had a bit of road walking through town and happened upon some ice cold water left out by the church!

It was an insufferably hot day and we were climbing for most of it. We were both drenched in sweat but excited for a second day in a row at a hostel. This was our focus: must. get. to. HOSTEL!! We arrived down at the road to hitch in to Casa de Luna around 4:45 and faced our longest attempt at hitching. A whole ten minutes passed (haha, we’re so spoiled) before getting a ride. We can now check off a truck bed hitch from our list!

We arrived to the esteemed Casa de Luna, grabbed our Hawaiian shirts (it’s a rule you must wear one), pitched our tent in the manzanita forest, and ate a delicious taco salad prepared by the wonderful Terrie.

We decided to resupply here because we had read that the “store” had a better selection than the one in Agua Dulce. The “store” was in fact a gas station and Kelsey spent an ungodly amount of money there; once again, never shop while hungry (and pay attention to price tags, whoops).

Day 28

Mileage: 478.2 to 492.9

We awoke in the beautiful manzanita forest a bit later than we normally would as we had decided on a little shorter day out to give a bit of reprieve to our bodies. We ate some of Ms. Terrie’s delicious pancakes and then got to work on some of the blogs, and Cody ordered a new pack and some snacks to be sent to Tehachapi for us. We left around 11 a.m. and headed straight back to the gas station for a little snack.

After eating our junk we hitched a ride from a really nice guy and we’re back to walking. We saw our second big behemoth of a rattlesnake slithering off the trail slowly and looking like he had a belly full of something; he was a fatty and too lazy to even rattle at us.

We climbed some more and then got to a very interesting water source on a hill. It was a big tank and you had to reach down in and dip your water out. It was nice and cold and we were quite pleased.

After the water stop we started seeing little caves in the mountain. We passed the first two as they looked too small to crawl into. The third was massive and we just had to take a looksie! It was tall enough to stand in and nice and cool, made for a fun little adventure to end our day. You just never know what you’re going to find out on this trail!

We hiked three days in a row of nearly 24 miles and hit two hostels in a row. It was a pretty good week and we’re seeing what our bodies can do. Feeling sore but pleased.

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