Day 28: mile 335.6 to McDonald’s to mile 353.9

5.13.18. 18.3 miles.

Man, today was a long day with so many things happening! We took it easy and slept in this morning because we were only 6ish miles away from McDonalds and we all wanted to get lunch (not served until 10:30). We all woke up to condensation on our tents and sleeping bags so we took some time to dry them out in the morning sun before starting.

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Those miles were pretty breezy (figuratively and literally - the wind has been crazy and it’s kinda cold!) down to Cajon Pass. Once we rounded the corner and saw those Golden Arches I practically ran to the store! And once we got in, there was tons of hiker trash taking over the back of the restaurant (sorry to all of the weekend trip people who were passing through on their way back from LA/ Vegas). It smelled terrible back in our corner. You could literally smell us from leaving the bathroom/ rounding the corner from the ordering area. Because we still got there too early (and I hiked 6 miles on an empty stomach), I ordered an appetizer of a sausage, egg & cheese McGriddle with a hash brown and a bag of apple slices. Once real lunch started I got a Big Mac, a cheeseburger, 10 McNuggets, a medium fry, and an Oreo McFlurry. Yes, I ate it all. Yes I needed to use the restroom multiple times before going back to the trail. Yes I had a v difficult time putting my pack waist belt on when leaving. The staff were really nice to us in there, and they had so many electrical outlets for us to use and charge our stuff. We also decided that we weren’t going to try to hitch to Wrightwood: we were going to do the whole climb NOBO so we wouldn’t have to deal with logistics. Overall, McDonald’s was a blast, even though I felt uncomfortably full for the first 3 miles out.

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Our whole hike the rest of the day was gradual, sustained uphill for 12 miles. We gained ~3200 ft in that span, and did it in less than 6 hours, go us! It was hard, but also not hard. Around 5 miles out of McDonald’s I felt rubbing on the bottom of my foot so I took my shoes off and examined: new blister that was pretty big. It didn’t hurt, it was just kind of squishy. So naturally, I said Dory’s line from “Finding Nemo” in referencing “my squishy” blister so now my trail name is Squishy. Only took 28 days!

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We were banking on a comment on guthooks that there would be tenting at this mileage and thank goodness there was & we were able to squeeze in with the people who had already gotten there. The views were incredible during the climb, but we ended up socked in a huge fog cloud on a ridge, so we were cold & just wanted to set up and crawl into our sleeping bags & eat dinner. Today was the latest I think I’ve set up camp so far out here, since we got into camp around 7:20.

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I’m pretty excited that we’ll be getting into Wrightwood tomorrow! I’m feeling very deserving of a zero day, and supposedly Wrightwood is super cute and hiker friendly.