Day 9: Climbing Up To Thunderclouds

Start: Silver City
Stop: Goat Canyon
26 miles
Total miles: 166

On the road by 6am. Yes, more road walking. It beats down my moral and I focus on all the pain. What I really want to do is hitch. But somehow I push through. The next thing I know, a truck slows to a stop and Beads is in there. She forgot her charger at Motel 6 and has managed to find a ride there and back. It’s a world of angels.

I take a break as other hikers show up one by one. Lia, Porshe (PCT Class of 2013), Pacer, Threshold. We all mosey on. Eventually the pavement ends and the road turns to dirt. 15 total road miles today. We come to our first real creek of the trip. Wow! Flowing water! And just over 13 miles by 11:30am? I’ll take it.

The afternoon is a climb upon a climb. The skies darken, the thunder rumbles. Jacket, umbrella and pack cover are ready. I begin climbing straight up a mountain as the rain dumps unicorns. Because of my umbrella I don’t need a rain jacket for which I’m deeply grateful. I’m not joking about the straight up. Even in my short sleeve shirt, beads of sweat form on my skin. The steps are painstakingly slow. Umbrella in one hand, trekking poles in the other and straight the fuck up.

I’m getting closer and closer to the dark groaning clouds. The thunder splashes about the sky. Eventually I turn towards the sun as I push one more brushy climb. Beads is there waiting for me and we decide to crank a few more miles. We descend into a creek valley and put up our tents for the first time of the trip. Home sweet home.

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The Century Plant, blooms once in its 100 year life!
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5 thoughts on “Day 9: Climbing Up To Thunderclouds

  1. Whoa, The century plant says (displays) it all! Just gorgeous to put your eyes on. Hugs and angel hugs, MOM

  2. Dear Jennifer,

    Well, as usual, I’ve been in La-La Land, forgetting to follow your log until today. Just finished the full reading, every day of it, and I must confess it MADE my day. Reads like a novel with many beautiful lyrical touches like “dark groaning clouds”. Loved it–and FELT it…as though I were there…and ended up wishing I WERE there; another words, wishing I were young and adventurous again and thus COULD be there! My reaction is a curious combination of melancholy, envy and joy–the joy is for you of course, the other adjectives describe what old people are sometimes left with. Anyway, reading your little masterpiece I am everywhere reminded of the beauty of living in the moment–the beauty of distraction–so essential to the fullest appreciation of life. What a joy to have a quest, each day a smaller quest leading to the completion of a grander one! One of the joys of life is to discover that all worthy adventures are spiritual quests wherein the beauty of the nature of life manifests its secrets to us in the tiniest of pleasures and the most mundane of endeavors. Emi and I wish you the greatest growth, joy and success in your bravely embraced (and wonderfully described) adventure into the wilderness! With love from Bob and Emi.

  3. If you meet again say hello to Porshe. Met her at Timberline Lodge as the weather was closing (2013). Will try to provide Canadoug some magic when he gets closer.

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