5/6 – Day 29 – Rainy Day Hike

Got up at my usual time, a bit before 6, it was lightly raining. Waterboy was up a little later, he had offered me a ride to the trail. No one else was going to hike in the rain. We left hiker heaven at 7:10 and I was on the trail, actually on the road by 7:20. The trail through Agua Dulce is a 4 mile road walk. It was moderately raining and very cool. I soon hit a real trail that went up and up.

The rain never subsided. The higher I went, the colder and windier it got.  It was all desert chaparral country but soon I was in fog, with rain and high winds. I hiked very hard to stay warm. It soon got very slippery and I had to be careful, but to stay warm I had to keep moving. After nearly 3 hours the trail topped out and finally started to head down. I found a little shelter in some oaks and had a snack and rest for 10 minutes. The oaks soon gave way to chaparral again with steady rain. All of a sudden boom, like on ice I slipped and fell, banging my knee on a rock. I was shook up bit, and I continued on with blood soaking through my pants. I finally got a view of a lake and a road that I was getting near. It was still raining but less so.

When I reached the road at 12:30 pm, the sign said I had traveled 10.3 miles. That was fast hiking. There was a water cache there, but I had no need. I started hiking up again as the clouds started to part. After about 2 miles it stopped raining and I plopped down on the trail, in a spot of minimal wind and made a hot chicken and rice meal. That combined with a few rays of sun warmed and dried me somewhat. After a while I came across another water cache with sodas and beer, run by trail angels Joe and Terrie Anderson. After 23 miles, I reached the 2 lane road, with fast commute traffic, which I needed to hike down another 2 miles to get to the trail angels’ (the Anderson’s) house. After about a mile, a lady on her front porch offered to drive me the rest of the way. When I got there Terrie Anderson gave me a big hug; I set up my tent in the back yard, and I was soon eating an obscene amount of awesome taco salad. I am so stuffed.  Cecil who I had hiked with from Mt. Laguna to Warner Springs was there, Little Feet and her husband, and a new guy, White, and a couple others. It was a 24 mile hiking day, I am stuffed and exhausted.

Click the link to see where I am located: http://fms.ws/BzE9q/34.61995N/118.40997W