PCT SOBO DAY 106 – the rise of the machines

Highway 58 – tent site 
21.3 miles. 4062ft up. 3258ft down. 

The alarm ripped me out of my sleep at 6am. It can’t be time to get up already!! Gathering all our stuff together we head for breakfast and we find ourselves up wth all the truckers

Georgette comes to pick us up just air starts to drizzle, the ground was already super wet so it had been raining a lot in the night. We thought the rain talk might have been unfounded. Georgette is hiker too so she understood our reasons for getting back out there. 

Back at the highway of was drizzling as we set off. This stretch is famously hot and dry. We were grateful for the cooler weather as it meant we wouldn’t need to carry so much water. As the trail climbed up the rain got worse, thankfully it wasn’t cold or windy. Over the ridge I could see blue sky! Then within moments the cloud had rolled in and visibility was severely reduced. The wind machines could be heard but not seen and every so often the clouds would part to show the gian machines. 

The weather was changing so quickly it made me feel like I was in England. The clouds cleared enough to reveal the extent of the wind farm. There were wind turbines for miles and miles. It looked like the rise of the machines, a robot farm. It was oddly beautiful and I started out at it for a while as I waited for Catwater to catch up to me. She said she was feeling good today, much better after a rest, beer and food, and a shower and laundry! 

The trail smelt funny today. Kind of chemically. We decided it was the creosote bushes. 

After we crossed the second road it got got enough to take off some layers and we began the next 9 miles of uphill. It didn’t rain again, but the clouds continued to be changeable. My layers came on and off a few times, one random section got so cold I could see my breath and then it warmed up again. The earlier rain made the trail easier to walk on as it had compacted the sand a little. The climb was gentle, but Catwater seemed to get a long way behind quite early on. When I got to the cache – which had loads of water, trash cans and chairs– I waited an hour for her to get there. I realised a while ago that we would not make our intended 24 miles today and looked for another camp spot. I took some water from the cache, enough for the rest of the day, tonight and 10 miles in the morning, so I took 2 litres. I had been weeing excessively today after getting hydrated in town. I had around 2 seconds from needed to wee to chucking my pack down and pulling my pants down in time. 

My pack is supposed to be waterproof but it isn’t. I had dampness inside my bag and droplets of water, it’s hard to tell exactly where it was coming from. One of the seams maybe? 

It was all downhill from the cache to the campsite, there was a beautiful view across the mojave which was bathed in sunshine as we were under the big blanket of cloud. We were there by 5:30, still early but we decided to tackle the 1000 ft climb in the morning. We didn’t see anyone else all day.  

I pitched my new tent! It’s so shiny and orange! The poles work, the zip works and it’s the right shape! I had dinner of couscous, cheese, Fritos and Cheetos. I didn’t enjoy it but I forced it down. By 7:30 I could hardly keep my eyes open so I let myself close them, just for a second and woke up at 8:30pm. Why am I so tired?! 


I’m walking thousands of miles for Just A Drop because everyone should have access to clean water. Please donate here, every little bit helps. 


One thought on “PCT SOBO DAY 106 – the rise of the machines

  1. That water cache was a surprise last year, as I didn’t do facebook, or check water reports much, so did NOT know it was there. This year, when I took Sue road touring on this section, we stopped at a Starbucks in Tehachapi and got talking with a gentleman sitting next to us. As it turned out, he was the one that set up and kept the cache supplied. It was nice to be able to thank one of those angels that you usually never meet…


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