Days 34-37: Tehachapi to “the real desert”

Day 34 – zero day

It was so good to wake up next to Rafael. I missed him so much! We ate a little at the free breakfast from the hotel. Then we walked to have an actual breakfast at Henry’s Cafe. It was ok, but more importantly, filled me up. 

I took him on my resupply grocery trip. He got to see my crazy food and meet a ton of hikers as we darted between aisles.

Day 35 – Nero

Rafael let at 10am to catch his flight. I wish I had spent another day with him.

The trail family left in the afternoon for the trail. I night hiked 12 miles and made camp with the Bear Cans and Silver Fox. It was super windy and I was beat, so I cowboy camped.

Day 36

I woke up grumpy, as the wind didn’t stop. I quickly packed my things and took off.

The wind shoved me in all directions as I tried to climb up a grueling hill. When I finally reached the top a few hours later, I took a break. I reached into my side pocket for my sunglasses, but they weren’t there. At this moment, I just thought I had packed them away inside. However, after emptying my pack, they were nowhere. I started asking everyone I met if they had seen them. I was too far to turn around and thought they had likely blew off the ridge I climbed.

When I got signal, I was able to post on the PCT Facebook page about them, hoping some kind soul would find them.

Day 37

Today is the start of “the real desert” and the longest waterless stretches. While hiking Southern California, all the locals would say “just wait until you’re in the real desert section.” I have been fairly lucky, in that there have been few extremely hot days.

This section had a 40 mile stretch without water. However there were water caches that had been maintained. You should never rely on these and the first one I had packed 5 liters to. While resting there, someone passed by and told us the next cache was full too. Turns out this dry section wasn’t so dry or hot!