Mile 94.1 to 109.5
Slept very little…was my first time camping alone. It was windy and I could hear an animal outside my tent all night long, plus I had to pee but my fear of a late night cougar attack kept me in my tent suffering. When I got up, 5 am it was still dark but I somehow was less worried about phantom cougar attacks. But I was right about an animal outside my tent, there were tracks all around…later found out it was likely a skunk…so glad it didn’t spray. I quickly packed up camped and started into Warner Springs by 6 am. The sun rising has been my intimate friend these past few days.
Just before mile marker 100 I felt small rocks or sand in my shoe and pressed on thinking it could wait one mile to address…wrong! New blister on my left heel…it messed with how I walked and think may have aggregated the blisters on the ball of my left foot. I will learn. But heck I walked 100 miles!!!
I continued to push on…had to make it to Warner Springs post office before it closed at 130. Unfortunately because of my early start I missed trail Angel Veggie who made pancakes (which I’ve been sort of craving since Lake Morena) shortly after I passed Barrel Springs (didn’t stop there as dead rats were found in it just days prior). The trail slowly led it’s way out of the mountain side and in to open pasture and I was met by a herd of cows.
I walked several miles through the pasture and up on the horizon I spied a long awaited landmark…eagle rock. I met some wonderful day hikers while there who not only offered to take my picture with the eagle but also make sure I made it to the post office. I knew I had to climb up eagle rock, my goal was the head but like a scared cat I got stuck midway up. Guess this will work.
Walking the last 3’ish miles in went by fast and I learned so much about the plants and landscape…thank you. For instance, the cactus were brought in by the Indians when they were relocated. We talked about the trail and trail names…Eva and Jarrod named me Bubbles but that didn’t seem to fit. But as we were talking about the happy yellow flowers my wonderful day hiking trail angels named me Poppy after the flower and I think it fits.
We arrived into Warner Springs somewhere around noon, they gave me a wonderfully cold Gatorade, shuttled me to/from the post office and said our goodbyes. At the community resource center, I was able to shower, the volunteers washed my filthy clothes and grilled a burger for me…loving this trail community and volunteers of Warner Springs.
I opted to camp in Warner Springs instead of moving on. While there I caught up with Canada and his brother, and met thru hikers Occupy (hiked the Appalacian trail), Stella (California girl), Daytripper, and a group of boys who are young and free spirited who I refer to as the potters. Alison, Ashley and FIL arrived just as the community center was closing. Into the early evening the Texas Trio arrived. Another pair of boys who I met at Third gate water cache yesterday as well as Bri and Kellan arrived later. That girl Bri is rocking it…first backpacking trip ever!
Camp was very entertaining and glad I stayed. I love how this trail brings together such a diverse group of people and we all become comrades regardless of age, gender, belief system and what not.
Once in my tent I tried popping my heel blister to no avail due to awkward position.