[pct-l] Section A completed

Freiman, Paul pfreiman at ucsd.edu
Fri May 4 20:32:18 CDT 2007

As I approached Warner Springs someone pointed out that I could go by trail the remaining 1.2 mi to the store.  My reply was I was going to hike the road.  Actually, I hoped that someone would pick me up.  It worked! Meadow Mary at the rescued.  Into WS by 1:00.
I wanted to get the spirit of the trail this year and hike with the others for the first section.  It was awesome.  I hiked alone, mostly, but saw what they were doing.  In past years I have hiked from sunrise to sundown, barely stopping on the trail.  I wasn't in that kind of shape this year and that isn't how anyone else does it.  Typical is Basil and Teatree.  They blast past me in the morning, then I catch up and pass as they rest. We repeat this several times a day.
We are needing water.  The first day I make it up to Long Canyon Creek and die there.  EasyRider sees how much pain I am in and offers me the water he has filtered.  I bless him.  It is only five miles more to the Laguna Store the next day and I spend two hours there and stuff myself with food and drink.  It is a very easy 22 miles to Poineer Mail and I rest next to the gushing GATR.  I arrive at PM at 5 and check the water.  It is good tasting.
It rained three hours the next day and I want to go all the way to Scissors (25 mi) to set up for San Felipe Hills. Rodriquez is a wonderful water stop.  Afterward I get in a pace with Stomp.  He starts slow and goes faster and faster and faster until I am whipped.  Just then I run into Billy Goat and Captain America sitting on the trail.  Captain says I must answer "What was name of Dudley Doright's Horse?"  I answer correctly, which shocked the Captain, because no one else ever has.  I got to proceed down the trail as a result.
Scissors was very windy.  During the night it pulled all the stakes out of the ground and made for a sleepless night.  It was my fault.  I've had the tent in heavier winds. I wanted to leave by 5:30 AM to head into the San Felipe Hills, but I left 45 min later.  The day was hot, but not extremely hot.  Nevertheless, seeing the 3rd gate water was a thing of joy.  I understand girlscout is to thank.  Last year girlscout was thinking of renting an ice cream truck and handing them out at Scissors, but I think this was better.  THANK YOU!
Midway between the 8 miles to Barrel Spring is Billy Goat Cave.  This cave provided the best sleep of the trip.  Everyone else was 30 degrees cooler in heavy winds.
So now I'm enjoying the life of Riley (old folks saying) at the Warner Ranch.  I go back to work next week, but boy this week has been fun.  
Before I leave I want to express some helps.  First, I was dehydrated but urinating freely.  Meadow Mary reminded me that dehydration isn't just lack of water, but lack of minerals.  She gave me a pack of Emergen-C and I was ready to resume.  Second, keep your shoes loose on your feet.  Two years ago when in Washington I didn't realize how much swelling of the foot there was.
Third, the wind is very stressful on hiking.  I don't know if it brings in junk or just dehydrates.  Take extra Emergen-C.

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