Slept well and got up at a little before 4 am and got a lot of hiking done before it got warm. That is to say it didn’t get intensely warm at any point, which was nice. There were some fine views here and there peaking out over the surroundings. The cloud covered some of the desert floor so that it looked like the mountain peaks were sticking up through a sea of skies.
Other parts were spent ascending and descending various mountain ridges as we passed the same Highway 2 over and over. Including yesterday I had now passed that road nine times. There was also a small section of detour from a section inhabited by endangered toads. Instead there was a bit of road walking and a trip to a more conventional camping site where some weekend hikers offered me some fruit, which was nice. Later I crossed the 400 mile mark and celebrated with a lunch “feast” consisting of tuna and tortillas. Later there was trail magic in the form of hot dogs and beer, but unfortunately I had to decline as I was too full. Cut to 20 minuets later when the hunger was back and I certainly regretted that decision. Last part of the day brought us through a burned area meaning the return of the dreaded poodle dog bush. As the burn was some time ago many of the poodles hat started to die and thus leaving behind a skeleton of the evil that once was in favor of more benevolent plants.
I took a break before going to the camp site as I was considering pushing on a bit further. A thin haired older hiker walked by and I said that this wasn’t the camp site. But he said it was as he had always camped there. I asked “always?” To which he listed like five or six years that he had hiked the trail and if he had camped at that spot. It could certainly be used as a camp, but I saw a proper camp site a couple of stone throws away and went for it which turned out to be a more proper camp site with pit toilets and tables. Sometimes technology triumphs experience. Before heading to the proper camp site I asked him when he thought entering the Sierras would be a good idea. He said it was a matter of picking one’s poison: being early and having too much snow or late and risking winter snow before making it to Canada. However, he thought there wouldn’t be too many problems with the snow this year.