Day 43 – 5/25/15
Junction of SC111 and SC39
Miles – 20.2
Total Miles – 648.2 (PCT 623.6)It was a warm quite night. One of the few we have had the entire trip. Being up in trees really helped block the wind. Today we have to make it to Willow Springs, our next water source. It is a 1.6 mile side trail that we will reach in 16 miles. We started the day by hiking down into Landers Meadow, a nice treed meadow with big grassy fields. All to common on the PCT, the trail turned and entered another burned area. There were many different flowers growing in and around the burned out tree trunks. We would make a turn and the ground was carpeted with tiny purple flowers. Next we would turn another direction and now the ground was covered in tiny white flowers. Another time there were fields of yellow flowers. Despite being in a bad burned area it was actually very beautiful. When we reached the mouth of the valley, we started to drop. We hiked down out of the pine and oak forest and into the desert. After dropping more than a thousand feet we came to Kelso Rd. This is one of the few paved roads in the area. When we got there we found a large water cache. We were not expecting it. We filled all of our bottles, cooked dinner, and drank as much as we could. From Kelso Rd to Walker Pass is 36 miles. We no longer need to go to Willow Spring which would add an extra three miles. Just to be safe we took several extra litters. Nonetheless we still have over thirty miles to get to Walker Pass.
The trail from Kelso Rd was a 4 mile long slow up. We did it all in one push. We next pushed on to a road junction. To our surprise there was a picnic table there. A table with benches to dangle our legs and a place to sit other than dirt. It is a real luxury! Cloudrider was having dinner at the table. We decided to have a bit to eat to take advantage of the table. Cloudrider told us that there was no water at Willow Springs. If we counted on Willow Springs for our water we would of been in trouble. I am glad the unplanned water cache was at Kelso Valley Road. The Omelets (Over Easy and Sunnyside Up) came in and used the table too. As the sun was getting low we hiked 1.6 miles further and setup camp. Being back down in the desert we have wind again, but we are somewhat sheltered from it by a stand as Joshua Trees. Earlier in the day, someone tried to give Will the trail name of Hunter because he is hunting a trail name. At first Will liked it, but now is having second thoughts because he knows a Hunter back home.