Endangered Species Alt

Day 28 – 5/10/15
Buckhorn Flat Campground
Miles – 20.8
Total Miles – 419.2 (PCT 390.2)
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Happy Mothers Day! It was another cold night. We were a bit slow getting going. Once on the trail we started up Mt. Baden Powell. With our very heavy packs, it took several hours to climb to the top. It is a 3,000 ‘ climb in 4 miles. We only stopped once the whole climb. At the top, the wind was blowing so we did not stay long, we each ate a bagel with cream cheese and an apple and hiked out. On the way down, we bumped into Doug, a young man whose goal is to hike the entire length of the PCT with a heavy 65 pound backpack. As we moved down the ridges, we could see the mountains near Tehachapi. They are the southern foot hills of the Sierras, and are our next major goal of the PCT. They are roughly two weeks away.  The rest of the day we hiked along a series of ridges, slowly dropping down to Hwy 2. We had to cross it several times today.
Our big obstacle today was the endangered species (frog) alternate route. There are two choices of trail:  the first loops around the closed section of trail, dropping thousands of feet only to climb back up again for a total of 20 miles. The second choice adds about 1 mile of hiking, but requires a 2.7 mile road walk along Hwy 2. We have been warned to avoid this road on the weekends because it is heavily driven, and often times by people who like to drive fast on the curvy highway, thus making it dangerous!  Today is Sunday, however we knew it would be late in the day when we reached this section of the trail. We were hoping that fewer people would be on the road at that time of the day on a Sunday. We started the road walk a little after 6:00. By the time we got to the end, the sun was down and only 15 vehicles had past us. Our thinking process worked! We are tired. We found a campsite, set up the tents, ate dinner, and went to bed. It has been a long day.  We pushed ourselves hard to get where we are tonight.
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