Having not a too long day ahead, I let my self sleep in a bit. The morning hours brought me up off the river valley through a long ascent with at times a tad narrow trail. Biggest nuisance, however, was the abundantly present poison oak. I think I have seen as many plants today as I have jointly on all other days. Luckily, many of the plants weren’t too big so it was easy to walk around them if you saw them. I had my eyes glued to the trail and hopefully I won’t have missed any. The poison oak eventually disappeared as the trail ascended and got us out of the forest floor. When I looked up at the sky I saw to my surprise that today was an overcast day. It was a long time since I had seen even a cloud!
After about fifteen miles I got to a road that I hoped to hitch from to get two point seven miles to the small city of Bucks Lake. The road unfortunately had surprisingly little traffic, especially going west, which was the direction that I wanted to go. I tried to hitch for just shy of half an hour without any success before I started walking. That got me down a bit because of the prospect of also having to walk back and thus adding over five miles combined to what was already a slightly tight schedule mileage-vise as I felt my calves and Achilles’ tendons were telling me to take it a bit easy. I walked about two miles initially trying to hitch along the way until I thought it was too short a distance to be meaningful. Then a car pulled over already having a hiker on board. The driver asked me if I wanted a hitch and I said it was only a short stretch. He said he knew and it was up to me, so I got onboard. His name was Terry and he actually hosted hikers and offered a bunch of nice amenities at his and his wife’s home, but I was planning to hike on. I asked him if there were many bucks at Bucks Lake. He said that he didn’t know if “Buck” was a person and he’d look it up when he got home. I thanked him very much for the ride as we shortly after got out at Haskins Inn and shop. The other hiker was from Belgium and was called the green devil. He was like me trying to make it to The town Chester the day after tomorrow.
Haskins had a deli, which only served sandwiches, so I had one of those. I could probably have eaten three, but instead had a pint of ice cream along with doing my resupply and planned a later second lunch. Outside the store was a pay phone, which is something you don’t see a lot, but here, like in Kennedy Meadows (which also had one) there simply was no cellular service in the town.
I said goodbye to the other hiker who wanted to get a hitch north and thus bypassing part of the trail. It then started raining lightly. This was the first time raining since that one day around mile hundred. It has been pretty dry and sunny here on the PCT!
Going back, I was, however, quite lucky as I passed the fire station in the tiny town a woman asked if wanted a ride back to town. I said that would be awesome. She, Barb, had brought cantaloupes to the fire station as there was a Fourth of July pancake breakfast there tomorrow (that is, on the seventh of July). What that event more specifically entailed, I do not know, but it was signposted on the nearby roads. She said that she and her family very much enjoyed the nice nature that they were surrounded by.
Not having to walk back really made me happy and I got hiking again. Shortly after the rain gradually died out shortly after. The next stretch was a mixture of parts with young trees, which looked like overgrown Christmas trees, and much older forest with dense and tall trees.
I called it a day a bit early and set up my tent under trees but overlooking a valley. As the sun set, I witnessed the sky turn gradually more red before the light faded.
This days miles: 1250-1275