Monday, May 06, 2019 – 9.90 miles
I was only planning to walk to the Acton KOA today, so I took my time in the morning and chatted for awhile with a NOBO hiker (apparently there are other people heading SOBO but they are a mysterious, yet to be encountered species) with the excellent trail name ‘Crocamole’. The explanation for the name is that he tried to ‘use avocados to protect his Crocs’, which I interpreted as him rubbing the avocado into the Crocs. He clarified that he had placed the avocados whole inside to relieve pressure from the tops of the Crocs and said that I’m the only person to have thought of the avocado-rubbing scenario. I like to think that it’s because I’ve met a lot of unique people, not because I have a low view of humanity. When I told him that I had recently finished Women in Love, he said that he had seen a copy at a trail angel’s place and was considering reading it too! It would have been fun if he had, then we could have discussed it (a wild Saturday night). New PCT challenge: Read Women in Love and tell me what you think about it.
The weather was cool and cloudy when I started walking. A driver stopped to make sure that I was purposefully heading SOBO. Yep! Thanks for checking! Soon I reached the entrance to Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park, which features interesting rock formations. I was hoping to visit the interpretive centre, which is near the PCT, but a sign informed me that it’s closed on Mondays. I see you, Vasquez Rocks, but you are a mystery.
Inside the park, I met a man walking around with dowsing rods. I said hi and we talked for awhile. He explained that he was looking for… electromagnetic rifts, I want to say, but the first Google result for that term is Danny Phantom fanfiction. I’m surprised that such a thing exists, but it probably compares to this humble journal as champagne to water. Anyway, he was looking for something that ‘impacts the magnetic polarity in people’s bodies’, and asked whether I wanted to try. I mean, I don’t know why that even needed to be phrased as a question, but it was. I took the dowsing rods and walked around for awhile, but alas – they remained still as they never would have in Danny Phantom fanfiction, proving the superiority of said fanfiction to this journal. The man suggested that maybe I was immune to electromagnetic rifts(?) due to hiking a long distance. That sounds like the most plausible explanation… I returned the dowsing rods and went on my way. A fun encounter.
I saw a snake and a few feet away, a lizard with a crushed head(?).
The scenery was mostly dull from Vasquez Rocks to the KOA. I’m looking forwards to entering the mountains again, but I’m also really not, since the weather forecast is atrocious with days of rain and presumably low-hanging clouds. Being stuck with the idea that Mt. Baden-Powell is one of the highlights of the first 700 miles of the PCT, I’m almost tempted to postpone it again and flip back up to Mojave. I did pick up a poncho in Aqua Dulce, so at least I’ll stay dry in heavy/sustained rain.
To reach the KOA, you can cut across a field bordering the Santa Clara River. It’s nice enough, with hiker camping ($15), showers (towel, soap and shampoo for $2), expensive laundry (wait until Hiker Heaven, if you plan to go there), a small indoors area with a microwave and pizza oven, a pool and a hot tub. A sign asks people to not enter the water if they have diarrhea. It’s a major blow to my faith in humanity to think that there may have been any incident to inspire the posting of that sign, but maybe it’s a preemptive strike. The camping area is overrun with hikers, verifying the rumours that I heard in Hiker Heaven of a big bubble. I bought a burrito at the store but wasn’t very hungry. I think that I’m still being sustained by the huge portion I ate at the Mexican restaurant.