Day 30 – 35 miles in one day is a long way

We were up early and walking by 6.15, well we thought we were up early but Alison had gone before any of us emerged from our tents!

We reached the 500 mile mark and had a little celebration. (There is a video on Instagram for those who need a laugh). 

  

  

500 miles!!! I can’t quite believe I’ve come this far, on day one I had serious doubts over my ability to do this thing, but as time has gone on I’m feeling stronger and stronger and I might be finally getting a pair of hiker legs! We were in a cold wind so we quickly moved on. 

We found the water source 6 miles in and we found Alison. She had made a contraption to gather water from a bag and a piece of string. This is Growler having a look in the hole…

 
There was some kind of animal skeleton in there, maybe a cat? Alison made her coffee and breakfast with her ‘cat water’ (hello new trail name!) and we moved on, relying on our remaining half a litre of water. A couple of mile later we came across the next terrible water source…

  

A tank that collects rainwater. It would have been possible to get water from here if you moved the scuzz to one side but none of us were desperate enough yet. We carried on…

  

Then next water source was a bit of a steep trek down the hill to a stream, this time we managed to get water! Water filtering in action…

  

In a few more miles we came across a cache with soda (mmm soda), Rachel was lying under the tree, she hasn’t been well for a few days so she is getting off the trial to see a doctor in the nearest town. We stopped there for a couple of hours and chatted and napped…well we tried to, it was a bit windy…

 
We made it to our goal of Hiker Town which is an odd little place. We found a bunch of people hanging out in the garage which is set up for hikers, some old sofas, a shower and toilet and a sink – everything a stinky hiker needs. I had some food as a priority, and a ride was offered to the store, so naturally I went to get a soda. A 1 litre soda, plus a Gatorade and a chocolate milk. I was thirsty. 

There was a guy there who claimed to be a state senator – he gave me a solar light, the kind you stake into your garden, which is exactly what I need for hiking! I graciously accepted and then gave it to someone else. 

Our plan was get to Hiker Town and rest up, then hike out again in the afternoon to evening/night hike over the LA aqueduct which is notoriously hot and waterless. Some others planned the same thing…here is Jesse stretching out before he left…

 
I tried to take a nap before we left but it was too noisy so I had to settle for just having a lie down. 
We hiked out eventually at around 8:30pm the LA aqueduct is long, straight and flat, and we didn’t see any of it because it was so dark. It was nice and cool but our legs were protesting having already put in 21 miles already. Cool Breeze, Growler and I hiked by the light of my head torch and it was all going well (apart from the 4mph pace we seemed to have got up to), until a whole load of dogs started barking and all we could see were the glare of their eyes, then my head torch started blinking. Scariest moment yet! There would not be a single chance of me doing this on my own. We told life stories and asked classic questions such as ‘what would your death row meal be?’ the whole way to make the time pass more quickly. 

We had a teeny tiny break where we sat exhausted on the side of the aqueduct and listened to The Staves. It was definitely one of those moments. We managed 14 miles before we couldn’t walk anymore and we cowboy camped next to the dirt road. I was too tired to care about the bugs. A 35 mile day which stared at 5.30am and finished at 1.30am. Completely and totally exhausted. 

 

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5 thoughts on “Day 30 – 35 miles in one day is a long way

  1. Congratulations. 35 miles is a BIG day. I always figured I had a 40 mile day in me somewhere on the trail, but as it turned out I never needed it. I never pressed it beyond 32 miles, but I found that after 30, my legs were on autopilot and I felt I could walk forever. (A deluded thought, but maybe that is the place that those ultra marathon runners get to. How else do they do it?)

    I have never signed up for Instagram so guess I will miss that dance at 500 miles. I bet every hiker has a picture to remember the moment.

    Swiss Army and I had left Hiker town early this morning for a lovely stroll across the desert along the aqueduct and through the windmills to Tylerhorse Canyon Creek. Weather was windy, but not hot. I knew night walking was a strategy for this stretch but just as happy that I did not have to deploy it. When walking in dark or fog, I ask myself ‘What’s the point if I can’t see the scenery?’

    Here is what you missed…

    Like

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