Last night was freezing and windy (60mph winds predicted). I could hear the wind in the trees but we were sheltered so only caught us occasionally. But it was freezing when it came. The wind slipped under my tent, whirled around my face and through my sleeping bag, then slipped out the other side. I had on all my clothes and my sleeping bag over my head. Still cold. Need to reassess for the sierras.
Did not want to get up at all. Didn’t sleep well. Felt like I had a full on cold in the night, lots of coughing, sorry campers! Hip flexor in lots of pain. Yesterday I felt like I had been hit by a bus. Today I felt like I’ve been hit by a train.
After getting up at 5am I eventually left at 7am. It was windy and cold and I spilt my water over my gloves and down my back which didn’t help matters at all! Didn’t take my cold clothes off for a couple of hours which felt weird considering how hot it has been. Twix break at 8.30am which is pretty much elevenses anyway! No trees today. Back in the desert. It takes me a good hour to warm up and walk normally, I basically spend the first hour of the day looking like I’ve had a nasty accident in my pants.
I walked by myself for most of the morning, leapfrogging with some others. There was no one around so I sang loudly (inspired by Jesse if you’re reading this!) and it felt good.
Later on I was listening to my music on shuffle and the Eurythmics – Must Be An Angel was playing. As I rounded the corner at mile 53 the most amazing view came in to sight after a fairly long windy climb. I was struck by it and had an urge to dance, there was no one around, so I did. I danced my party for one like there was no one watching. In those few moments I felt amazing. I felt as free as a bird. Like I was soaring high above where I was stood. No worries. No cares. No stress. Just me and the desert.
Then I cried.
It just hit me like a bolt out of the blue. I think I just realised I am hiking the pct. I think I just realise how happy I am. It was all a bit overwhelming.
I composed myself and hiked on.
Went to the water source at sunrise highway which was a metal tank with a ballcock thing (like you get in a toilet) which you push to make clear water come out. We had to filter it but it was better than the still water in the tank!
Hiked another 3 miles to get to a campsite on the edge of a dirt road 100 yards away from the PCT. Camping with Kat, JBird and Pop. We should get a good sunrise in the morning. So nice to get to camp early and have time to do things like clean your feet and dry your socks – it’s the little things that cause the most pleasure! 16 miles today.
I hope it’s warmer tonight.
Tomorrow brings a promise of a pool and wifi…
Photos on Instagram @masonalexandra