Saturday, July 02, 2011

Trailhacker is hiking Section C during a summer heat wave

I just dropped off Trailhacker at the start of Section C. We parked the car at 8pm. The temperature was 102. It didn't seem too bad. You know the old saying: It's a dry heat. So we started hiking.

Amazingly there are still a few flowers blooming in the desert. We saw burrowing 5 owls staring at us right away. Lots of tiny baby quail and bunnies, too.

We slept in Teutang canyon on the trail. It is difficult to sleep without any blankets over your body. You sit there looking at the stars and there's nothing holding you down. Maybe you will float away.

Gradually through the night I was able to cover my feet, then my legs with a bivy sack. With that I could sleep. Eventually it cooled enough I could drape a corner of my sleeping bag over my waist.

We woke up at 4:30AM. I said good-bye to Trailhacker who was continuing onward and I hiked back to the car. I reached the car at 5:30AM where the temperature was a pleasant 74. I had breakfast in Banning and the temperature was still a pleasant 74 and seemed to stay that way all the way home to Santa Barbara which I reached at 9:30. Hopefully he got in a few solid hours of pleasant morning hiking before the blast furnace began.

Trailhacker is experienced and has a perverse enjoyment of extreme heat. He'll be walking along two creeks today and tomorrow. His method to deal with heat is to periodically get his clothing wet, so Section C is a section that he should be able to manage. By Sunday evening he'll be back up in the trees where the temperatures are nicer. I hope he will be okay, but he's done far worse than this in the past.

His goal is Wrightwood by next weekend. I hope he gets better weather soon.

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