A little while after I was on the trail, Little Thor caught up to me. We got to the Cafe around 8:30 and were greeted with live music. We chatted with Alyssa, Riley and Anna while we waited for our food to come.
I ordered the Denver Omelette, a side of Bacon and some coffee. I ate every last bite with a big grin on my face. Worked on updating this blog and figured out the shipping schedule so I could discuss it with my mom.
Trudge and Dr. Jones showed up, followed by a constant flow of hikers, a lot of whom I hadn't seen since Warner Springs. We filled up the majority of the Cafe. Trudge bought a milkshake and it made me want a root beer float. Called mom and left the cafe around Noon.
The challenge of the day arose as the trail climbed the 2600 feet to the top of the ridge. The wind had really picked up and the sun was below the ridge. Needless to say I was cold and not really enjoying it.
My original plan was to hike to the PCT fire closure at mile 162, then proceed 1 mile on a side trail to Cedar Springs and setup camp. When I got to the trail junction I think I made the best choice I could have. I charged down the PCT Mountain Fire Alternate; rather than heading to Cedar Springs which would have kept me on the mountain for the night. Running off the the mountain got me off the mountain and out of the wind as well as helped keep me warm. With my muscles cramping a little and my groin feeling tight; I reached mile 1.5 on the PCT Mountain Fire Alternate to a water source. By that time clouds had started over the ridge I was on 20 minutes ago. I was warming up and enjoyed the break.
I thought about stopping there to camp and decided against it. There were a lot of Widow Makers around and I felt I could push on a little further in hopes of finding a better spot.
I arrive at a paved road (part of the Alternate) and I start walking down it without paying too close of attention on where my next turn would be. Ended up being mile 3.6 on the Alternate Trail. I arrived after dark and was still a bit cold and down. I ended up walking 2.6 miles further than I anticipated. Bonus, I only have 11.6 miles to go tomorrow! I plan to get up fairly early so I will have some time in Idyllwild before dark.
Setup my tent a short ways after getting off the paved road. Ate some food, listened to some music and decompressed. I hope the other hikers on the mountain are staying out of the weather.