The morning starts with an instantaneous climb again.
Packed up before everyone and set off.
In a mile I gain just about 1000ft.
This mountain is kicking my ass. Every day has been a struggle up this thing. It’s really making know just how outa shape I am. Pouring sweat, and with no real flat spots for a few miles I’m stuck pushing.
My views are beautiful though. This part of the trail is now finally starting to get into the pine forest. That’d be great if the forest didnt burn down recently. The mountain side is littered with burnt trees. The wind has no buffer here and stings with every gust.
The higher I go, the worse it gets.
By the middle of the day I was already totally spent. And still had quite a few miles to do.
Everytime I turn a corner the trail jets up another switchback, there is no reprieve here.
I keep telling myself, “Big Bear, hot food, shower, bed”. That mantra keeps me going. If I manage to pull another 8 on top of the 10 I’ve already done I could be at the highway to hitch into town.
The drive is real. And I’m gonna sleep in a bed tonight.
Mental game, I feel like I’m slowly losing it. Doubt and wonder why I’m putting myself through so much pain keep hitting me.
This is hard…. very hard..
It’s not talked about very much with other thru hikers.. the pain.. the hardships.. the weather.. etc. The mountain is trying to make me give up.
I yell at it in spite..
“I fucking hate you mountain!”
My anger forces me up the rest and eventually I’m standing at 8300ft.
Made it to the side road for a 6 mile road walk to the highway.
The winds picked up just as we started to head down the road and we got sandblasted. Gusts around 40mph blew rocks and debris into our faces. We had to cover up or be pelted.
Fortunately the further we made it down the road the wind lessened.
Made is to the bottom where highway 38 was after 2 hours of power walking this dirt road.
We set our bags down on the side of the highway and tried to get a hitch to town.
Car after car after car passes us. Some wave as they accelerated past us, some swerve towards us to make us jump back into the median.
Needless to say it wasn’t going well
One of my tramly members discovered that he has cell service.
We called a cab, and got picked up after 2 hours of trying to hitch.
Heading to Big Bear, spirits started to raise.
Found a hotel, got dropped off, checked in, ate dinner, showered and went to sleep.
Today was ruff. Almost lost the game.
Time to recover…