May 13, day 19
Start: Messenger Flats, mile 431
End: hiker heaven, the saufleys, mile 455
Miles hiked: 24
Another great day. Sheriff and I woke at 4:30 and were on the trail by 4:45. It’s so easy to pack up when you cowboy camp. The trail was filled with poodle dog bush and downed trees. Poodle dog bush looks an awful lot like marijuana plants, and smells similar. However, it is a plant with 10 times the intensity as poison oak. It pops up along the trail in burn zones (which there are many burn zones in Southern California). It was hard to avoid it all morning, especially when hiking in the dark. Sheriff and I chugged miles, quickly making it to 14 miles, where we were again greeted by copper with a root beer float. I heard rumors on the trail that he was traveling north, and it was a great surprise, as it was just starting to get hot. He had bananas and ibuprofen, along with some sugar cookies. We had it all 🙂
It was only ten more miles to Agua Dulce. A waterless stretch, gaining roughly 1,500 feet in the first few miles, completely exposed. At this point, I was ready to stop hiking and be in town, especially excited to get to the Saufleys, who I’ve been told by many is some of the best, if not the best, trail Angeling on the pct. I put in the headphones, which I have only done 2 or 3 times, and cranked some tunes to get me going. I pretty much ran up the mountain and down it, catching Sheriff on the way down. It was so hot, but I occasional strong winds helped keep me cool. The trail when under the highway with a long tunnel, and it provided some great lighting for photos. Here’s sheriff almost out of the tunnel.
We then walked next to rock that was eerily similar to the red rock formations found near Denver in roxborough state park. The area was called Vasquez rocks, and it was beautiful.
A few miles later and we made it to the saufleys. What a great place. I’ll do a further write up about it tomorrow, as all of my friends and I will be zeroing here. Oh, and today we finally caught up to not a chance. We thought we would yesterday when we all hiked 35 miles. Joke was on us, as she hiked 41 with tiny (formerly hi-tek) and dolphin the space traveler. She’s a rock star. So fast and strong!