Day 12 – mountains are calling

Reluctantly got up and packed my bag. My food bag so heavy. 

We went to the Red Kettle which is billed as the best breakfast in Idyllwild but I didn’t fancy anything. We saw Jarrod and Eva there (met them in San Diego and they started the day before us) which was really nice. 

Ran into Devin and he asked me if I was ok. He said I always put a smile on his face when I saw him so I wasn’t allowed to be grumpy. I may have had a little hangover grump from yesterday. 

Some of us parted ways this morning, part of the PCT is closed due to fire damage. Some people doing an alternate route, but I decided to skip that section, with the knowledge that I will be making up the miles later on. I made the most sensible decision for me and my hip. My hike. My choice. (Plus some of my friends made the same decision as me).  
Roxanne and I were walking along the road wondering how we were going to get a lift up to the trail head, and two lovely old ladies shouted ‘are you looking for a ride?’ Boom. We got a ride! 

To get back to the PCT you have to take the Devils Slide Trail. 2.5 of straight up miles to reach the PCT. My legs were like lead, I could hardly move them! The morning was a bit wet and cloudy. Not cold though, so all the layers we started with soon came off. 


My iPod charger is broken and I wasn’t able to charge my iPod, so I had to amuse myself in other ways…


We took an alternate route around the pct (which added an extra mile to the official PCT route) to summit San jacinto peak. The weather was pretty terrible on the way up, we were in a cloud mostly, and I was knackered, so I took a nap (unplanned) in the middle of the trail. I thought everyone had passed me anyway but about 10 mins after I started moving again some day hikers caught me up (caught up by day hikers! Oh the shame!). 


The weather started to break the higher we got and we got lucky at the top – the views were breathtaking. As I got there JBird and shaggy were just doing down. I always assume I am miles and miles behind but it’s nice to find out I’m actually not, it gives you a nice little boost!


Of course going up to 10,834ft means you have to come down and after a long long 2.5 mile descent, on the north side through the snow, the trail joined back to PCT. 

We collected water from a stream – knowing the trail is all down from here means you don’t have to carry as much water which made me very happy! The 4 more miles down were the longest 4 miles ever. I caught up with 4 ladies and we had a little chat. They said “let Alex go ahead because she’s really fast!!” Haha!! That’s the first time anyone has said that so far!


Around a corner came incredible views of the wind farm, it’s odd to think I will be there soon. 


We continued walking in to the cloud and rain. It was getting colder and colder. The last mile to the camp spot seemed to take forever (as it always does!). I pitched my tent in lightening speed and launched all my kit and myself in there. I ate the most massive pouch of tuna and some biscuits for diner (just like being a student again!) 

I am typing this listening to the rain on my tent (and the reason we zeroed in Idyllwild was to escape the rain! Oh well!). 

Tomorrow we go down…


3 thoughts on “Day 12 – mountains are calling

  1. What gorgeous views! I’m not sure why but your blog didn’t update to my reader so I have 6 entries to read! I’m so excited as this is one of my fave PCT blogs this year. You are an amazing and evocative writer. Thank you so much for sharing. I’m planning my trip and struggling with the idea of the desert portion. Do the entire PCT or dkip 700 miles. but my hike…my choice…inspirational. Thanks so much for sharing!


    1. I didn’t have any service for a few days so I uploaded a load at the same time. Thank you for the compliments, I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog. The desert is intense but amazing in its own way….


  2. Boy, were you fortunate. On the 24th, by the evening, it was pretty foggy and the rain was forecast in Idyllwild. The next day, on the 25th, which if I read ahead, while you were coming down off the mountain, there was a massive and very dangerous ice storm on the mountain that trapped a lot of hikers the night of the 25th..

    I found this nice cabin which was newly turned into a hostel to wait out the weather. It was a $20 bargain with my room with double bed next to bathroom and shower. As wet as it was getting outside, I felt I had won the lottery.

    Met Jihad, Leave No Trace, and Unbreakable here.


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