Agua Caliente Creek to Several Small Campsites Among the Boulders, CA
Today started out sleeping in till after 7am and getting on the trail around 9:30.. As soon as we started it was evident that we were leaving the meadow behind.
We then surprisingly came to a part of the trail that followed a stream. It looked a lot like hiking out east, and you would have never guessed that you were still in the desert except once in a while we would come across a cactus.
Instead of relying on trail angels for water today, we got our water from Mother Nature. Here is Tim collecting water for our filter:
Just after taking this picture I slipped on a rock and got my foot wet. First thought I had was, "Great, now I'm going to have to hike with a wet foot and possibly get a blister." Then I remembered...we aren't in a hurry. So I took off my shoe and sock and placed them in the sun as we sat on a couple of rocks in the shade for about 1 hour as it all dried...no worries!
The only worrisome part is that the trail started going up. We climbed all afternoon for about 4 hours.
We then came to an interesting spring in the middle of nowhere. We used the bottle seen on the left to get the water into our water bladder that we then filtered. The water actually tasted pretty good and it was nice and cold.
We knew our campsite was more uphill, so we decided to eat our dinner not far from the spring so we didn't have to carry as much water up to camp. A hot meal really hit the spot, especially after all that climbing.
After "dinner" we continued to climb and got passed by Medicine Man, Victor, and Troll. Check out what Troll is wearing:
I guess when you've completed a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail and had once already thru-hiked the PCT, you can wear whatever you want.
We finally reached the top of the climb and went around the bend to a view of a new valley. How beautiful is this?
At this point we were pretty much done for the day, but had to continue on for 2.5 miles to what is reported as "several small campsites among boulders." So we hiked up and down and meander among these high desert hills until boulders come into view.
Finally we get to the boulder field and there are many other people there taking up campsites that we were hoping for. So, we kept walking the trail hoping to find something, then we saw it. Wow! What a place to pitch a tent! I just hope it is level enough in there to sleep.