Pacific Crest Trail (2019) 5: Views + Views

Tuesday, March 19, 2019 – 5.30 miles

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Because of the campground closure I abandoned my plans for a zero in Mount Laguna, deciding to instead take a nero at Mount Laguna Campground five miles down the trail. At a saddle with amazing views out over the Anza-Borrego desert, I settled in for a long viewing party and considered eating a Backpacker’s Pantry cheesecake dessert that my sister and her partner had given me for Christmas, but the instructions made that seem more like a camp activity.

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I took the short side trip to Foster Point, where a metal plate had arrows pointing towards various mountains. A snowy peak was visible… San Jacinto?

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Mount Laguna Campground was open when I arrived, but almost deserted aside from a variety of birds – woodpeckers, a nuthatch, mystery specimens. I spent a long time comparing sites, because I struggle when confronted with more than two options. The doors of the first toilet block I went to were locked, while the women’s toilets in the second had no toilet paper. They were separated by gender despite being individual rooms. I thought that maybe the women’s would have trash bins for tampons/pads while the men’s wouldn’t, but they both had bins filled with pieces of clean toilet paper. 

After finally choosing a site, I settled in to try the cheesecake. The instructions involved removing packets from the powder (it made a mess) and ‘beating for two minutes with two forks’ (just let me retrieve oh wait I’m not in my home kitchen). The mixture got stirred feebly in its package for more than two minutes with my spork, and tasted pretty good, though more like chocolate pudding than cheesecake. So messy though! I got the mixture on my clothes and on the picnic table. Trying to eat from the annoying package convinced me to repackage the other Backpacker’s Pantry meal I was carrying, even though it won’t fit in my pot with the required amount of water so I’ll have to eat it in two batches. The meal package included five plastic packets: a packet of peanut butter, a packet of peanuts, a packet of lime powder, a packet of powdered sriracha sauce, and a mother packet to hold all the other packets. JUST STOP. HOW IS THIS EVEN MINIMALLY PRACTICAL ON THE TRAIL. Next time I’ll buy soylent.

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