Subject: Trail Towns
Like trains we thru-hikers may move singly in our thoughts and space or, just like magic hook up and become part of a series of human transport, each carrying their own self contained fuel/thought/source on that permanent PCT highway.
That is precisely how it feels now that I’ve somewhat hooked up to the British and Sacramento thru hiker express heading towards Canada.
Us three (Heading North – the brit guy; Gourmet – the Sacramento retired attorney guy and yours truly Trawlercat) are now at the public library at Wrightwood; waiting on a most gracious of all Trail Angel who will be loaning us their second home and placing it at our disposal. Now how is that for some real trail magic. I guess this happens more than you might think.
Last night we stopped at about the 8000+ foot range on top of a ridge that did nothing but climb continously; fortunatley for this train we stopped at the high mark. What an amazing view.
If I had the cord to my camera with me I could easily upload some amazing pictures of cloud formations. The first looked like Niagra falls complete with the waterfall; the second image is of what looked like cloud glaciers. This stage unfolded itself to us starting last evening and this morning was even more amazing.
After a cowboys breakfast we hiked mostly downhill off the PCT for about 5.5 miles down the Acorn Trail that led us to the town of Wrightwood. The first place we stopped at was a cafe called Evergreen. The two sisters attending us eight thru-hikers were very welcoming and kept the food and drinks coming.
To give you an idea of what economic impact thru hikers are having for the community each one of our bill was about $10-15 plus throw in a $5 tip and you can see how the local establishments loves us hungry hikers.
Propulsion for a train is provided by a locomotive – propulsion for the thru hiker is anything found in town cafes. I need buy more chocolate powder to power myself up in the morning. The Brit likes our instant oatmeal and Gourmet prefers to prepare cowboy coffee where you just dump the ground up beans in a bag and let her boil.
For our breakfast this morning we devoured a chicken fried steak, potatoes, three eggs and sour dough toast. The chicken fried did not agree with the Brit who ordered his eggs easy over instead of the over easy way we’re used to hearing.
Gourmet and I did a fairly good job of trashing his countrys way of cooking steak; that is until our waitress joined in and showed us a picture of a boiled steak, sunny-side egg and spaghetti all on one plate. That is what her husband ended up while in China. This apparently is their version of a western meal.
The word ‘train’ comes from the Old French trahiner, meaning to pull, draw – the word thru-hiker is a form of hiker-trasher extraordinaire.
The good thing about joining a train is that you can easily go into auto pilot mode and just let the time go by. The bad thing is that group think may become the norm and you don’t necessarily go deep into your own thoughts.
Both are good and both are great for variety while on this trail. We are knocking the miles down now and will continue to do so. The climb from highway 15 – Cajon Pass was no where near as bad as Mt. Gorgonio (the worse by far).
Good morning America – I love you!
This song somehow comes to mind for this stretch of the trail and is more appropriate than you may think. This is truly some amazing country that we are fortunate enough to be traveling through.
For now this 1955 baby boomer engine is operating just fine but, still a little heavy when she is all fully loaded.
Thank you my little Loggi (The Logistician) for the last resupply box mailed to me to Phelan and for bringing our dogs to see me – if only for a night.
Unforunately, I am still carrying that electric Norelco shaver that you forget to take home with you. Man is that shaver heavy!
So what is the cost per mile of this 1955 engine? More than you might think as it seems that these trail towns are spaced about two days apart for my hiking 2.8 to 3.2 miles per hour pace. We are at about 1/8th of the journey so we’ll see if that continues.
Thank you anyone reading this associated with this wonderful trail; the trail that heals.
Memorial Day celebrations are here this weekend. According to my calendar it marks the start of the summer vacation season, and Labor Day is its end.
For us thru-hikers the vacation never seems to end – especially when you have little towns like Wrightwood along the way.
See you on the trail!
Trawlercat – Circa 2011 while hiking from the Mexican border to Canada 2,650 miles