Saturday, May 19, 2012

19 May - Day 29 - Roof of the San Gabriels

Highway 2 (Mile 369.5) at 7374 ft elevation to summit of Baden-Powell at 9399 ft (Mile 378.2) to cowboy camp past Little Jimmy Campground (384.5)

Total Trail Miles: 15
Total miles: 19

Charles here. We were a bit late getting out of town so we didn't expect to make many miles.

What an amazing little town Wrightwood is. The folks here seem so taken with generosity and open-hearted caring for thru-hikers, it at times floored us. In my long experience living and traveling around the world I have known nothing that comes close to this. The generosity is given without regard to race or religion or gender or sexuality. And the people giving it are of any race, religion (or cheerfully of no religion), gender and sexuality. This has so far been true in much of our PCT experience - and here it is blazingly bright. And we heard many stories today from other thru-hikers full of open-mouthed and glad wonder at their Wrightwood experience.
We hitch-hiked out (no trouble finding a ride) to the trailhead up among the pines and blooming manzanita: a fresh, sweet, sunshiny day.

Left to Right: Heehaw, Seano, Dionysus, Pan, Problem Bear, Chris, Udi, and Clark Kent
From here we made the arduous climb up Mt Baden-Powell. A tall peak of about 9,400 ft elevation with commanding views on a clear day reaching to the south from the distant bump of Mt San Jacinto in the Peninsular Ranges north to the Transverse Ranges with Mt San Gorgonio in the San Bernadinos, sweeping up to Mt Baldy here in the San Gabriels - then north to the pan of the Mojave, then the distant blue humps of the Tehachapi Mountains that are the start of the Sierras. But, as it happened, the weather was hazy so we only got impressions - and the views westwards did not show us the Pacific. Beautiful being up here though. We met up with fellow thru-hikers on the summit and had lunch with them.

Lots of Boy Scouts out on the mountain, however (this being a mountain special to the Boy Scouts). And we had bus-loads of elderly and middle-aged Korean hiking club members.

Then we took a side trail inadvertently (signage issue) and ended up on Hwy 2. We road-walked 3x the distance to catch up to where we left off on the PCT. Ugh. Weekend motorcyclists raced each other past us. Later we heard the ambulance helicopter, and then shortly afterwards walked past a wrecked motorcycle with lots of emergency service vehicles and personnel around it.

By afternoon, we found a low ridge above the road, and bushwhacked up to re-connect to the PCT ~ not far from where we left it. We hiked along and our beautiful campsite we were aiming for was thronged with Boy Scouts ~ so we hiked on a distance further and camped under huge Jeffrey pines, away from the scouts. Here we had a hiker supper of this and that ... Dionysus brought out some of his magical tequila, and we were much eased as we lay back under the crowding stars.
Dinner time.

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1 comment:

  1. Caballeros!! I love you guys!! Happy trails and I hope to see you all again soon! Aloha nui loa, Dancing Feet