Day 21 | mile 395.2 - 430.4

Woke up to headlamps and the sound of zippers. I thought it was time to get up, but I looked at my watch and it was 2:38. People just going to pee probably.

Woke up again at 5:30 to Radar’s alarm that he was neglecting. We both cowboyed and he was sleeping 20 feet away. Not close enough to wake him up and I didn’t have anything handy to throw at him.

I really didn’t want to get out of my bag, so I tried to do stuff while still in it which took forever. Made oatmeal and at the last second decided to throw in some instant coffee. Boy, was that a mistake. It was only edible after I crumbled some lemon-ginger cookies in it.

Finallllly got going at 6:38. Radar was still chatting up other hikers. I made it out of the canyon and changed out of wind gear. The sun was shining and I felt amazing.

Radar caught up with me and passed. I caught up with him and this Rangers fan at the next water source. There were free postcards, so we sent some.

I stopped for lunch at 1:20 after a long gradual climb. Found a spot with reception, shade, and a view of Death Valley - the trifecta. Radar stopped for lunch maybe half a mile before me. I had tuna, mayo, ritz cracker wrap. Followed by gummy candy and Chex mix.
Chatted with Alex who is at a team offsite today. They’re playing archery tag and bubble soccer. Looked really fun!

17 miles done, pushing for another 17 today. I queued up Ready Player One and ran/walked 5 miles to the fire station. It’s the last water source for 18 miles. I’d have to dry camp tonight, so I got 4 liters.
Ran into Radar as I was arriving and he was leaving the spigot. He must’ve passed my lunch spot without either of us noticing. I was off trail a bit.
The next section were sandy switchbacks. And water is heavy. It wasn’t a great combination. It was also hot, so I kept unbuckling my hip belt so that it wouldn’t chafe on my back. Ooof.

Passed a 420 sign! Of course the PCT would have a 420 marker. Everyone is a stoner out here. Even the 17 year old high school student from Oregon.

I have a least favorite person on the PCT. I don’t know him at all, not even his name. We’ll call him Short Shorts. He walks really fast with this bent leg half run gait. He looks like a dancing sprite with short orange shorts and a big straw hat. I’ve passed him and he has passed me several times, and he’s never ever talked to me. He always tries to talk to Radar though. It’s like I don’t exist.

Anyway, he comes up behind me, and goes, “out of curiosity, has a guy with a really small backpack passed you in the last 30 minutes?” I just replied with “no”, and he moved on. I knew he was talking about Radar and I knew where he was and where he would be camping, but I didn’t feel like offering this information to him.
Short Shorts ended up stopping a mile or so after he asked me that question.
Caught up with Radar at mile 30 at 7:20. We hiked the last 5 miles together trying to out-hike Short Shorts. It was a really annoying 4 mile uphill. We were flying though. Made it to the top without headlamps, then got them out for the short descent into camp.

Everyone was already asleep when we got here at 8:30. Ended up camping on what’s technically a parking lot. Another girl arrived after us. The three of us are spread out in the parking lot, cowboying.
Cheddar broccoli rice side for dinner. It was alright.
I’m warm in my quilt, but the wind just picked up and I have to keep my head under the quilt to stay warm.
35 mile day!