Saturday, March 16, 2019 – 11 miles
A cold night turned into a hot day. I crossed Hauser Creek, which was flowing – California had a soggy winter and I expect to see lots of running water sources and snow at higher elevations – then began a notoriously steep and exposed climb where people have run out of water and been rescued. I did it without breaks to see whether I could. Thanks Washington for training my muscles and/or mind with your iron fist.
At the next stream I tried one of the cricket protein bars that I had ordered for this hike. My first thought was ‘I DO NOT LIKE THIS’, very strong, all capital letters, but I got accustomed to the taste. I think that I was thrown off by the lack of sweetness, but that’s actually a positive when most bars are stuffed with sugar.
Today is Saturday and Lake Morena Campground was packed with RVs when I arrived. I set up my tent in the hiker/biker area, went to the ranger station to pay the camping fee ($5), then talked with a few other hikers while waiting for a reasonable hour to visit the malt shop for supper. See what happens when you hike semi-quickly? You have to wait around to visit the malt shop. The food was good and the employees didn’t answer yes to a random woman asking ‘are you sick of the PCT hikers yet’, so it has my seal of approval. Astute readers will guess what I placed into the tip jar. Whatever it was, they’re legal tender.
The hiker crowd is being quiet at this late hour (9:05 PM) but the same can’t be said for the nearby car campers playing loud music and arguing. I think that alcohol must be involved since one woman blew up at a hiker for shining his headlamp at her (it passed over her while he was heading to the bathroom…) and now she’s swearing at the people with her… oh, she just said ‘give me a beer, let’s do it’. Please don’t give her another beer.