I Love Cows: Scissors Crossing to Warner Springs
Miles 77.3 to 109.5
The sun was shining bright, which was perfect for an early start. Ghost (an awesome trail angel) showed up at Stagecoach RV park as we were all packed up. He easily fit five hikers in his minivan and shuttled us to the trail.
It was a continuous ascent for quite some time, but I took my time and rested often. Ten miles was on the menu so mostly I was just focusing on enjoying the high ridge walk that was adorned with purple and yellow flowers, and purple-hued barrel cacti.
We found a quiet, large campsite and prepared for a windy night. I spent way too much time overthinking how to set up my tent to accommodate the relentless wind. Orientation was perfected and many large rocks were piled high on each stake. Then suddenly there was no wind and it was a quiet and peaceful night. The moon was as bright as a floodlight, and when I had to leave the sanctity of my warm nest to relieve myself I didn’t even need a headlamp. The landscape was clear and bright under the midnight moon. In the morning we laughed at ourselves for worrying so much about the wind. We decided we must have PTSD from that horrible windy night just a few days before. I ended up sharing a campsite with Katie, Karen, Inmate, and Fire Keeper.
The next day I was up bright and early. I was the first one out of camp and headed quickly to mile 91, which promised water. I headed about a quarter mile off the trail to find a huge water cache and a group of amazing trail angels who were stockpiling water, handing out candy bars, and picking up trash. It was pretty awesome. It took a lot of effort to continue on despite the party-like atmosphere. I had the 100-mile mark to look forward to and I was way too excited to reach that milestone. So I marched on. Most of us hiked 14.5 miles to make the 100-mile mark and to camp at mile 101, which was quite the festive place. There were at least 11 tents and 17 hikers. There was a spring that flowed into a giant trough that was the home of some very noisy frogs. The Bennett kids had a fun time catching frogs and we cooked dinner and enjoyed a small fire. Tecate Hero made a beer run and he also entertained us with his ukulele. It was a great night on the trail, beautiful weather, and awesome company.
I’m up early again and one of the first to hit the trail. Another sunny and beautiful morning was in front of me and the fields of grass, flowers, and giant oak trees made it once again surreal. When I came to the field of cows I just shook my head. They were so cute! We had a brief interaction as they were reluctant to leave the trail so that I could pass through. They finally moved on and looked at me like I was insane… and annoying. I love them.
I didn’t want to leave. I had only been hiking for a couple of hours but I desperately wanted to stop here for the day. I took a long break and made some lunch and enjoyed the green fields for a while. It was only a few more miles to Warner Springs, so I pressed on. I was ready for a shower and some real food. The hike from mile 101-109 is my favorite thus far. That stretch of trail comes to mind often and with great appreciation for life on the trail.
It was a short hiking day so we arrived to Warner Springs early. The community center caters to PCT hikers and they allow you to camp in their yard. They also have bucket showers, laundry, and some resupply options. We happened to get there just as the community center staff was having a going-away party for one of their own. They welcomed us to join them and they had tons of food and cake. I had a chicken salad sandwich, chips, and a Coke. Later, Ghost showed up and took us to the post office so that I could pick up my resupply box. It turns out that I sent way too much food. I shared a lot of it and it was amazing how many people needed what I had and I needed some things that others were discarding. It all worked out perfectly. Also, it turns out that there was some trail magic at mile 101 that morning (which I missed because I left early), but after that they took all the leftovers to Warner Springs and dumped a giant box of goodies for the hikers. We had lots of beer and snacks and spent the night just hanging out.
They also have a mobile outfitter in Warner Springs at the community center, so I was able to get a new food bag. I was using an odor proof bag, but the plastic broke along the zipper. Now I have a real food bag. Several people were able to upgrade some gear and the music was epic. I know that was random, but they had music blasting outside the trailer. It was great.
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