Im awake at 6am , the last stars are packing up their kit bags and singing on their way West . The bird song replaces them . Big toe and I breakfast on coffee,cacau beans , oats and granola. Its great to talk through the days plan with someone . We agree to head out towards Cajoun pass . There is a semi mythical McDonalds resturaunt there , that is said to test the will of staunch hikers who dont usually indulge in a big Mc . Im up for this challenge . McDs gave me a red card over a decade ago and I still havent found it in my self to forgive and move on , infact , Ive lectured to hundreds of school kids on the rubbish they put in their burgers and milkshakes and I dont intend to shake hands with Ronald McDonald today .
So we are off the 14 miles to Cajoun Pass and the great Mcds in the sky . The pack is lighter today , im only a day from resupplying food , so naturally the pack gets lighter as I eat through my supplys . The walking is easy , we bounce into Guss from Main and then one of the twins Andrew , he tells us he has been trail named ‘Clinic’ as he saved a dogs life on the trail yesterday by feeding and watering it . He is a vets nurse and was able to give a full lesson in pet care to the grateful owner . We are in solid company , breezing our first 8miles in a couple of hours . Stopping in the shade of the trees and swapping storys and talk life takes on a whole bright hue. These are solid people and I love the easy way we connect and grew together . Trail problems of kit or mileage , food or direction all get quick fixes here . We watch a couple of Magpies play before we take back the trail . The second part of the morning becomes more of a challenge .
Im absoloutly loving the little lizards , they seem to send me back to being a snotty nosed kid who believes in Dragons . Each one is like a minature minatour , a mythalogical monster a wild throwback to the plesteosorarse days , when Tryanosarus and Teradactilse had the pecking order on the top of the food chain .I just dont seem to be able to spend enough time in their company , i photographed this little fella for five minutes and he didnt bat an eye .
I make my way straight to the mini mart next door , in the petrol station . Clinic is sat under a shady tree outside on lush green grass . Its so good i fall down right next to him and only get up to get a Hot dog and a cold drink. Three hot dogs later the ‘hiker hunger is still not satisfied and i have to suppliment with chocolate. I fill up on water and try and charge the phone , but Ive found iphones have ‘issues’ with solar chargers .True for mine !
‘Wildfire’ and another lady breeze in , as does Guss and Big Toe . Guss is in the process of a ‘food coma’ induced by twenty nuggets a big mac fries and a large soda , he is sleeping it off . Meanwhile Austen and ‘Righteous’ come through . We are sitting on a corner shooting the breeze . A biker called Tom comes and sits with us , he is dazzled by all of us , its becoming quite common place to see the reactions of the general public . A range inbetween amazment and diasbelief taking in righteous respect and deep puzzlement . One things for sure this journey challenges people who arent on it . It seems to shout out . “Hey! You can do it to !” . It certainly does to Tom , the slight tinge of insperation is in his eyes , he has seen something very very cool . We hikers love that moment , when a none hiker sees its just a metaphore for any pathway that they are on .
I have to walk off these bloody hot dogs , maybe i shouldnt have put so much sauce on , but most of all maybe i shouldnt have eaten three and the snickers, and the blue ribbon beers probably didnt help … Ohh well, i know the cure .. Im back on the trail . Under overpases and locomotive tracks.
Another 4miles this evening and we will be within shouting distance of Wrightwood where we can get a Nero day and a good shower . So the last four miles of hotdog fuelled hiking took me , Guss and ‘Wing it!’ To a stoney river bed campground full of cacti and croaking , midges and crisp air .
The moon is shining down right now for me as it is for you. Wherever you are , you are on the trail with me . I feel you in my heart each day and I know somehow I am in yours .
I can hear the yelping cry of a cayote mother calling to her cubs and the distant hoot of the trains echoing in the canyons . The lights of San Bernedino glow in the distant distance …if they only knew what they were missing out on here .
Sending love to each one of you ..x
Blister count :3
Adendium : Big Toe says he ‘hurt’ his knee !! So he booked into an Econno Inn. I told hime in me best Billy Conoly voice to “Git the sand ut hees ‘gina and get back t the trail !” I hope he is enjoying his swanky hotel room but i woudne swap him right now . I do miss his singing though!