I sleep in and gradually get up for 7:30 am. I’m getting use to sleeping in beds, they’re beginning to feel quite nice. I collect our clean clothes from the dryer as Poptart refills our water. Sue and Mike both had to go to work early so we eat breakfast with their daughter and her son. Breakfast consists of picking random food from the side such as chocolate, crisps and sweets. I munch and read the note left from Sue and Mike.
We get a hitch into Wrightwood centre from a woman who was taking her dog to be groomed, he was pretty hyped to see us. Bouncing all over her car, us and our packs. We head to the hardware store first to collect Poptart’s box and I desperately need new shoes. I check out the shoe section and find some merrells - size 4.5 - it’s so cool that they do half sizes. They cost 70£/90$ and it’s the most money I’ve ever spent on shoes. They’re sandy coloured and fit perfectly, it feels like I have new feet.
I bin my 25£ trainers hoping my merrells are rub on my feet.
Food is the next stop and spend about 35£/50$ on food. It only just all fit in my bag! A few hikers amble about town, eating outside the food store, wandering the hardware store and poking through the hiker box.
We get a hitch out of town from a guy who was going on holiday to Australia soon. We chat merrily about life and he kissed both our hands before leaving. Poptart is trying for big miles so she set off at great speed and I just dawdled with my heavy bag of food. I walk through the pine forest and chill for a bit using wifi and eating my smartie cookies. I’m not hugely motivated, the heat and heavily bag aiding my break. When I eventually get going I descend through the pine forest and find myself at the base of the steep 6000 ft ascent. It just zigzagged constantly. I take a moment before I begin the epic climb. A hiker box sits at the bottom where I use some suncream.
My right heel aches a bit after last night's race to the end so I take it easy and head with a speed of 1 mile an hour. I take several breaks up and I’m overtaken by roadrunner and Alex - later to be known as Puss in boots. I meet them at the top and what a view! I chill inside the roots of the wally tree and eat food with Roadrunner and Alex. Clouds lay beneath us to the side and vast verdant wilderness surround us on all sides. It’s bliss. So beautiful and enchanting. We chat about Carrot Quinn and the future burden of bear boxes They walk on and I remain there happily as a crazy fell runner appears having just run up the climb. He nods at me and continues down the path….
It’s about 6 miles to the next water source. I hike on and trail through the green pine trees and rocky route. My new shoes not letting any stones in. I ascend occasionally which allowed me to see the white fluffy clouds still. I see the fell runner again as he had turned around and proceeded to then pass me again in the opposite direction. Eventually I reach the spring named Little Jimmys Spring. I collected my water and reach camp. I hear everybody before I see them and there are quite a lot of us - Poptart, Road runner, Puss in Boots, 2 Canadians high on weeds and another couple. I setup my tent - just the inner, pleased to be done for the day and head over to the communal fire and eat some pasta. We chill talking of the generic hiker talk, all eventually peeling off to bed after 8pm.