Mile 664 to 687, 25 miles (incl 2 mile round detour to Chimney Creek campground for water)
Cost: camped, free
I woke up around 2am because I was hot… I can’t remember the last time I was hot while camping out here! I got out of my sleeping bag and opened my fly to look out at the stars, it was such a beautiful evening with millions of stars. I used my tiny little tripod for the first time and experimented taking photos with different exposures.
In the morning Smokey commented that I was one of the most colourful hikers he’d seen on the trail, “Just like a hummingbird, in fact I’m going to call you hummingbird,” he said. (My hiking shirt is pink, my skirt is green, my gaiters are purple, my shoes are pink, my headband is purple, and my hat is colourful). When he said this I mentioned that quite a few times on the trail hummingbirds had flown right up to me (even a couple of days ago when I was stopped talking with Bucket, Fancypants & Rally a hummingbird came right up to me) and I just thought the hummingbirds must think my shirt is a bright pink flower… So far the pictures I’ve been able to take of the hummingbirds are of a pink hummingbird and a green one. And when I fell over coming down San Jacinto it was because I was looking at a hummingbird (and my cuts now look like scars). “I like hummingbird,” I told Smokey. “Then hummingbird you will now be,” he replied.
Previous trail names that had been suggested but I wasn’t too keen on were:
- Knickers – because I said this once when we were all doing laundry together but Americans don’t use this word.
- Shoe goo – because I was using so much of this glue to fix the holes in my first two pairs of shoes.
- Sachet – because this is what I call small packets, like a Nutella sachet or coffee sachet, but here they are only referred to as packets.
- Maverick – because of my love for the movie Top Gun, but I’ve always wanted to be Charlie (played by Kelly McGillis), not Maverick.
I love my new trail name, thank you Smokey 🙂
And I just so happened to see 2 more hummingbirds today (hovering very close to me, while others watched on).
At one point in the trail, I came to a rocky outcrop high up where I could see houses way off in the distance. I turned on my phone in the hope of finding phone service and I got it 🙂 A few minutes later Smokey came by and sat with me checking his emails. The next person to come by was Yanko exclaiming he had just seen a bear on the trail and Teflon (who was behind him) had therefore given him the trail name of Bearly. He told us how he was walking along the trail listening to music when he looked up and there was a bear on the trail walking toward him. He took a photo then waved his arms, tried to look big and growled at the bear as it continued to walk toward him. After a few more growls from Bearly, the bear moved off the trail. Here’s a picture I took of Bearly’s picture!
That afternoon in the search for water I headed to the Chimney Creek campground having missed the small detail about the water being a 2 mile return trip. 2 miles might not sound like much, but any detour in the “wrong” direction is too much! After walking for a mile I came to campsite 36 where the faucet was turned on. The few of us who were there were wondering why the faucet at campsite number 1 couldn’t be turned on??…. But at the same time were grateful that number 36 was on.
Loaded with water, Bearly and I decided we would try to make it to the top of today’s third peak and sleep at 8,000 feet. The path was kind to us and the ascent was as gentle as it could be. I arrived just after sunset and was greeted with beautiful dusk colours. I was sweaty though and at 8,000 feet my sweat soon cooled my whole body down so I got straight into my tent with all of my clothes on and tried to warm up in my sleeping bag.