October 9th, 2018
Mm 566.5 to Gamble Spring Canyon mm 545
Distance: 21.5 miles
1015 – 1830
We had a leisurely morning at the house. Stellar needed to wait until the PO opened to get his resupply and new shoes. I used the time to order some new shoes for our next stop, Agua Dulce. We also played a lot with the 2 dogs, Piper the poodle and Dallas the boxer. It’s great to spend time with pets.
Kuba and Piper playing ball
Cory drove us to the PO and we picked up Lator Gator, who was walking along the road. As we were leaving the PO, we saw Cheesy Poof and Legit walking in (they are the 2 women I shared a ride to Etna with, along with the dead deer). They later got dropped off just behind us. Cory drove us back to the trailhead and the 3 of us were on our way again. In case you’re wondering what happened to Bella, she got off the trail for about a week to attend a wedding, so I unfortunately won’t be seeing her again. But it was nice to be back in a group with the guys.
We proceeded through more wind turbines. There were so many, I had no idea. We could also see huge solar arrays down in the valley. Aside from being clean, no one is fighting any wars over all this sun and wind. Here’s to renewable energy!
Me sporting my own clean energy device
We climbed into some more hills and then came to a water cache at mm 549. This one looked to be maintained by some nearby residents, as there was also a trash can, cookies, and fruit. Not to mention an umbrella and chairs. It was called the Mile 549 Bar and Grill. Salty and a section hiker named Nat were already there chillin.
These caches are so wonderful. This one had a donation box, so Stellar and I threw in $5 each, the least we could do. We hung out for a bit, soaking up the late afternoon California sun. The day before, we were in a hot tub, but this was about as good.
We all decided to hike on another hour or so. After about 4 miles, we came to a dry gully and found some flat spots. The wind was howling through the gully but it didn’t look like there were many options further down the trail. I pitched behind a tiny bush and hoped the wind would die down. It didn’t and I was kept awake for a long time feeling my tent shaking. Wind seems to be one of the quintessential experiences of camping in the desert.
After dark, 3 more hikers arrived, making it a total of 8 of us as the site. I sure didn’t expect to find a SOBO bubble in the desert but I don’t mind the company.