So much has happened since I last logged on. I can't fit it all in one post.
Before I left Lone Pine I went to the PO one last time to mail my bounce bucket to Tuolumne Meadows. I took my Grape Nuts box and made a sign that said Horseshoe Meadows and went to Whitney Portal road to begin trying to get a ride. I stood out there for 2 hours in the hot sun, unsuccessful.
A local guy found me an easy target for some chit-chat and it became pretty clear I'd never get a ride standing around talking to him so I decided to go and ask around town if there was anybody to hire to take me to the trail. The Chamber of Commerce called up a guy who charged me a whopping $60 to return to the trail. I didn't feel too bad about that since he was an older fellow, very nice, missing some teeth, and doing odd jobs was all he did. I had always been paid a great deal to do Web Development so it didn't bother me too badly to spread the wealth a bit.
He drove me to the trailhead and I went up the Trail Pass trail to return to the PCT. Along the way I saw several thru-hikers coming down the trail, including Warner Springs Monty who I hadn't seen since Mission Creek way back a day after Cabazon. It felt good to be back on the trail.
I returned to the trail and kept meeting more and more PCT hikers. It's such a community out there of thrus, section-hikers and people who have done the PCT before and are just doing day hikes now.
Despite meeting so many hikers I ended up camping alone near a dry, grassy meadow. I wondered if I'd ever see the friends I had made previously, people like Steve, Danger Prone and Hawkeye, Gary, Circle, Shake and Bake and Slowride, Wheew. Maybe we would meet up at Vermilion Valley Resort, I thought. The Sierras seemed lonelier since we didn't all gather at the few water sources and camping sources anymore. Everyone was now free to design their own strategy for their own hike. We were all on our own, it felt.