Day 49 (Pete)

I wrote an entry early this morning at the Pines Cafe and I think the day number was forty three. We finished our breakfast, which was excellent, and set about our business. I got Siri on the phone and we had a good conversation. Dylan went to the PO and got our box. We sorted everything and divided it out by weight. When we first started buying supplies for the trip I considered vitamins to be of probable importance. Since Mom knows everything there is to know about that sort of thing, I asked her to recommend a brand. The ones she suggested to us a green and work well, I guess. We bought enough for one each everyday which was one less that she suggested. They are bid bucks, these pills. We also skipped the Calcium Citrate she recommended figuring that powdered milk would do. In any case, we now receive, in addition to the ones we bought, Calcium Citrate and enough for two more a day. That’s four pills a day for those who are counting. What’s more, she somehow located the same brand we bought but WAY bigger. Easily twice as big. We’re going to turn green!

As I entered the little mercantile I saw Dyl across the street talking to one part of an extended family of Hippies. They had been wandering around town earlier and I think I accidentally got them in the frame of a picture I was taking in order to burn up film.

“This is Pete my walking partner. This here is William.” I shook the younger of the two guys hands. He had an iron grip. “These folks are gonna’ give us a ride to the trail head while their laundries dryin’. ” That was easy, even easier that our ride in. We went too and from Independence, our longest hitch hike without ever sticking out a thumb, or even waiting, or even asking for that matter. William had approached Dylan with the question, “Do you need a ride anywhere?” The family, five in all, consisted of William, Daniel the patriarch, a younger woman either William’s sister or wife and two real young toe headed kids. They were traveling around gathering wild herbs and, “spreading their message of peace.” At the trail head, William hopped over the edge of a ravine and emerged two minutes later with enough wild onion and some kind of root to feed at least the two young ones. Dylan and I were both astonished and impressed with such an ability to find food on the land, especially after so many hungry days.

Fueled on omelets and potatoes, we hopped back up Kearsarge Pass. Near the top we re-encountered the Dad and son team from the day before. The dad looked half dead while the kid had so much hyper energy he seemed ready to explode. We left the “Kearsarge Kid” behind and continued to, “Haul ass,” as the dad described our walking style. Back on the PCT we snow slogged and scrambled up scree to the top of Glen Pass at 11,978 ft.. The north side was totally buried and we kind of half slogged and half post holed, sinking up to the knees and sometimes more, strait down to the Rae Lakes. The lakes are beautiful, albeit frozen and rimmed in snow. We are on a soft and not too boggy grass tuft on the edge of the upper most lake. It was the only snowless spot. It will be comfy to sleep on even if a little damp. I can see my breath already and imagine that in the morning this whole tuft, us, and all out stuff will be one big frost cake. “So, basically this is like college for you guys.” -William

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