6.2.18. 20.8 miles.
We were slow to wake up this morning, not really wanting to get out of bed and get back on the trail. But we did make our goal time of out and hitching by 7 am! Unfortunately it seemed as though no one wanted to pick us up. Finally after 20 min, the sheriff drove up and told us he could take us to the end of his jurisdiction, about halfway to Walker Pass. Score! He was super nice.
Once we got out, we still had to try to hitch the rest of the way. Again, no one wanted to pick us up, but then the CHP came and gave us a lift the rest of the way! 2 cop hitches in one day! The officer was really nice and friendly and told us he lives near Bird Spring Pass, where we camped the night before Lake Isabella, and how his son is doing his Eagle Scout project to make a nice rack & display for the water cache there so the bottles don’t go rolling around everywhere. He’s also an avid hiker and has done the JMT 6 times, and his trail name is Shovel. It was really awesome talking with him!
Once we got to the pass, it was 8:45 am and it was back to business. The temps were already pretty hot, and we had a big climb right off the bat. The climb ended up not being too bad, and the views were pretty amazing! I again got a view of the snowy peaks of the Sierra way off in the distance. So exciting! The mountains are definitely becoming more Sierra-like with lots of scree and rocks as the trail and granite mountains.
The rest of our day after lunch was pretty hard. We had a smaller, but steeper climb in the heat of the day that just sucked the energy out of me, and once we got to our water source, we had another almost 2,000 ft climb over 4 miles to camp. At least there was some shade on the climb to camp, but man, it was pretty brutal. Hot Mess went ahead of me & Butters to get us all a camp spot at the site.
We met so many people on the trail today that we didn’t know! Looks like a lot of people skipped going into town from Walker Pass and are going straight to Kennedy Meadows from Tehachapi.