Day Six – 20 July 2018 – Friday
Marlette Peak Campground (8228ft; mile 54) to Kingsbury North TH (7769ft; mile 76)
21.6 miles today of 183.4 miles total
My final day. Longer miles than anticipated. But I so look forward to that post trail meal.
While hiking I met this great team of guys. All 65+ year olds out thru hiking. There were four in total. Three PCT alums and one thru novice. They are part of a larger group of military friends who come together every year for a trip together. This year they spent a couple weeks doing trail maintenance before these few came over to the TRT for a bonus finale to their friend reunion. When I caught up to the first guy, he said he was behind the group because he had gone off trail at Spooner Summit to get water down at Spooner Lake. These guys are total badasses. Each one has had a lifetime of experience and story. When I first got on trail, I bought a 3 gallon water job thinking I might leave myself a water cache. But then I ended up starting within the dry section so didn’t need it. The point of detailing it now is that these guys were pretty worried about being in the beginning of the dry section and not being able to make big enough miles to reach enough water without each loading up under way too much weight. So I told them I would leave my water for them at the Kingsbury North TH. I never exchanged email, but I truly hope the water helped them get through the section.
I reached my vehicle at about 2PM. I stripped down my stinky hiking clothes, put on fresh clothes for driving, and finally dealt with my poor toe. It was swollen twice its size and extremely red and angry. My poor toe.
Anyway, I drove back to Stateline for victory food and beer. It was incredible timing. As I sat down for food, a torrential downpour broke the sky. I loitered at the restaurant and then took a quick nap in my Escape before hitting the road. I after the rain calmed down, I drove all the way back to Santa Barbara via Highway 395. The trip was mostly in that same downpour. But it was beautiful to watch the roiling clouds. And by the time I reached Mount Whitney, I was blessed with one of those stunning, post-storm sunsets that lit the sky on fire.
In the end, I am happy. The trail was too short, but it recharged my soul. Until next time.