After wrestling raccoons all night, I woke up late, having forgotten to change my alarm back to 0400. Awake at 0540, dink around. Talk to Zig Zag, who had suffered from the raccoons dragging his pack away, and stealing some of his food. He slept through it all, unfortunately. He gave me some lambs wool to try out on my blisters. We finally started hiking at 0650. Terrible. My god, we even know better! Hike along the creek for awhile, but mistakenly miss the last stop for water before turning off. Still had enough water to make it to Mission Creek, I thought. As per usual, long, f'ing hot slog up the hillside with burning blister feet. hopping along trying to fake it til I make it. Grant's feet are suffering too, so we were a sorry pair. On the last downhill to the water source, I start running to try to mask the pain, oh, and I had run out of water and was feeling awful. Made it to Mission Creek, put my shorts on, and lay down in the creek trying to cool off. Drank some water, washed our socks. The shade we found kind of sucked for napping, so we finally packed up our crap and headed over to another shade tree. By then it was 1145. We waited out the heat again until 4pm, napping, eating, watching a snake slither into the water, and eventually slither out. Soooooo hard to get going again. It was still hot, but less oppressive. We had been gaining some elevation, and it was a long hike back up to the mountains, topping out above 8000 feet tomorrow. We hiked along the creek, the plant life increasing, some little muddy groves of brush to tromp through here and there. For psychological reasons, we decided to keep hiking until we made it to mile 230, then look for a camp site. Well, as luck would have it, right at mile 229.97 there was a beautiful flat spot in the sand across the creek, so we called it close enough and snagged it. Finally setting up camp before sunset!!! How awesome is that :) Eat, wash feet, wash socks and underwear, brush teeth, sleep like a dead person.
pictures on instagram