Not really though, it was fun...
Leaving Acton was one of the weirdest points in my hike so far mentally and physically. The two days prior to coming to Acton my legs hadn’t been feeling the greatest. A constant rubbing of my left ankle against my shoe the past few days had led to some tightness in my knees that didn’t feel too hot on the downhills. On top of that, the KOA was a bit of a vortex and seeing so many friends hike through made me want to continue to hangout with friends. That meant I needed to move on though.
I was nervous going into this section of trail, the heat, the continued wearing on my body and a bunch of other things just felt like they were piling up. There was a big part of me that wanted to bounce directly to Kennedy Meadows and be done with the dry desert. There was another part of me that honestly thought long and hard about being done with this adventure. I was honestly so scared of failure I didn’t want to continue moving forward.
I woke up and walked out of that KOA at 6AM on Friday, June 4th. We made our way to Agua Dulce for margaritas and tacos, it was a good lunch. A group of us stayed in town for the afternoon to avoid the heat of the day but eventually headed out around 4PM to finish the climb out of town. It was hot and long but it wasn’t a bad hike. Eventually we got to water and found a place to shack up for the night, cowboy camping under the stars.
The next day was full of small climbs and good views. As the day went on and we progressed up the trail I could feel the cool ocean breeze coming in. It picked up after each climb until we found ourselves on the top of the ridge at the beginning of the Angeles National Forest 2020 burn area. We found a spot with a little wind protection and again, ended up cowboy camping under the stars. Plenty of stretching, plenty of laughs and plenty of friends passing by on the trail that night.
The next few days we went further than expected each day. We ended one day 6 miles further at Hikertown which meant we walked the aqueduct in the morning and got an amazing sunrise. I was actually cold at one point hiking the aqueduct... We pushed further towards Tehachapi than expected, which meant we got an unexpected zero day. Our attempts at planning were showing us that our bodies were ready to do more which was an exciting thing to see before we would head up towards Kennedy Meadows and on into the Sierras.
The days had been full of windmills, beautiful views, breathtaking terrain and some very cruisy miles. The Mojave hadn’t been that bad. I lucked out on weather, I lucked out on the people I was with, I lucked out that everything on my body was feeling good for the most part and most of all, I lucked out that I am here doing this and am so close to making it out of the desert.
The PCT stands for the Pacific Crest Trail, a 2,653 route extending from Mexico to Canada along the west coast of the United States. Every year several thousands attempt it and only a few hundred finish.