5/17 – Day 40 – Mt Jenkins

Today I hiked from Bird Spring Pass (mile 631) to Mt. Jenkins Pass (mile 662).

I woke up at 5 AM, packed up my gear, made some coffee and headed up the 100 yards to the water cache. The rest of the clan were just getting up. I gave Spitfire my bandage wrap as he was getting shin splints. I headed on up, excellent views and very windy. I hiked fast, slowly stripping off my warm gear as the day progressed. The first half of the hike was super, forested and along a great trail. After about ten miles, at 10:30 I stopped for lunch. I ate beef stick, Nutella, saltines, peanut butter, blackberry jam, graham crackers, cheese and drank Kool-Aid.  Near the end of my lunch, Early Bird hiked by. The trail soon entered a burn zone again, and then it became a dirt road — not so nice. After about six miles the trail turned back into forest and started heading down to Walker Pass. I passed Early Bird having her lunch and completed the 20 miles to Walker Pass Campground by 2:45 pm. There I met Opa, a German American PCT hiker. I made a dinner and planned to hike more at 4 pm.  Then the whole crew showed up (White, Midget, Dora, Spitfire, Crumbs, Early Bird and Yeti). It was a party, but I kept my plan and moved on at 4 pm. After I got to the road, I saw the Walker Monument.

I then met Jersey Joe for the first time. His dad gave him a Spot GPS locater just like mine. I continued on, up and up.  It got very cold, but I was OK in my warm weather gear. I saw I was catching up to someone.   It turned out to be Andrew who I’d last seen with Doug sitting on the couch in the middle of nowhere right after we’d seen the lion, before Big Bear. He said, “hey I have cell service”, and so did I for the first time in a few days.

We were on the side of a cliff; it was 6:45 pm. I called Mom and then moved on, because I wanted to camp and there were no prospects in sight.  At 8 pm, I arrived at the pass. Minimal space for camping was there, but found a nice spot out of the wind which is loud but thankfully not hitting my tent much. I never saw Andrew come by. For dinner, I ate teriyaki chicken and butterscotch pudding with freeze-dried apples in it. Very tasty. I stink. Two days to Kennedy Meadows and shower and laundry. That will be terrific.