Mile 415 to 436.
I woke up at 5:00 in our stealth campsite at the top of the mountain and saw the sky coming alive with color. There was burnt orange on the horizon transitioning to a beautiful blue in the sky above.
I sprang to my feet and packed up my camp in a record 15 minutes. Normally it takes me 30 minutes, but when there is a beautiful sky, you got to move fast.
I ran down the trail to the established campsite with 360 degree views of the surrounding area. In the distance, you could see city lights twinkling as the horizon to the east lit up. It wasn’t the most photographic spot, but the views were impressive. Bedazzled silently joined me and took in the views.
Burnout and Valdy soon came down trail and continued on to the first water of the day, which was at a fire station. We filtered water and checked the log book to see who had come in before us. We knew some names on the list, but most of them were new to us.
The next water was about 8 miles down trail, and we got there to find a usable but slow flow. The water in the desert is slowly drying up. I stayed behind with Bedazzled as she was still filtering water and B&V took off. Once Bedazzled and I got going, she took the lead and was heading through an area where the trail was overgrown. All of a sudden, the trail was gone and Bedazzled was falling. Luckily she fell with her head and pack uphill because the trail had completely eroded away.
Today was the second day dogging Poodle Dog Bush. It was plentiful and the stench was pretty strong. The scenery wasn’t too spectacular, but we did walk perpendicular to these naked mountains that looked like a series of progressively larger pop up tents.
We took a siesta in the closed Messenger Flats Campground. It was perfect. Burnout even had time to dry out his sweaty butt crack.
Everyone decided to hike out at 2:30, but I thought it was still too hot and waited until 3:20 to start walking the final 5.68 miles to North Fork Ranger Station in Angeles National Forest. It was nice to have some alone time to think about life after the trail. You would think you have a lot of time to think out here, but in reality you are always thinking about the next water, what you are going to eat, not tripping while walking, etc.
We are cowboy camping tonight and getting into Agua Dulce tomorrow.