A day without wind is not a day on the PCT at all. Waking to a slight chill in the mountain air, we had a late sleep in until 6:30. Packing our gear Rattles and I hiked one mile to a small cache that had chairs and water. Not missing such an opportunity we grabbed some easy rest. A short while later Sole Catcher came in. This was somewhat surprising, as we thought him long gone down the trail. It appears he missed a turnoff and spent some time wandering the nearby hills looking to get back on the PCT. Somewhat disgruntled by the fact, he hung around the cache chatting to us. The next miles of the trail led gradually downwards towards the first highway crossing. Wandering through burnt out scrub we were saddened by what could have been. After crossing over to the slopes of the next valley we caught the wind, and it wouldn’t stop for the whole day. Winding down the contours we saw the mass of wind turbines stretched out in the valley below. This did not bode well for a drop in the wind. Just prior to the highway, where many people hitch into either Tehachapi or Mojave, we found a nice picnic bench. There we had lunch with team In No Hurries. Erin and Daniel had resupplied a Hikertown and were headed to Lake Isabella, almost one hundred miles away. Ladykiller also joined us, having camped at the water cache at 1:30 am that morning. Apparently at Hikertown someone had put diesel into a gas engine, whereupon made it worse by adjusting a variety of parts. Ladykiller showed them how to rebuild the carburetor, and ended up being served pancakes by the wife of the owner the next morning. Full of food and with a light pack, we started the next six and half mile stretch. This was into the packed mass of wind turbines. As a result some of the gusts almost picked Rattles up off her feet. With hundreds to thousands of turbines it was a long windy section, cooled under the hot sun by the cold wind. Finally descending into a valley, we could see the highway in the distance that would take us to town. Deciding to wait until the morning to have a true Nero and Zero, we set up camp sheltered by some Joshua trees. An early end to the day allowed us to relax and anticipate hot showers and cold drinks that we would get tomorrow.
Miles hiked – 17