I woke up at 2 am and had to go to the bathroom. As I was out of my tent, I looked up to some of the most amazing stars I have ever seen. If I was not so cold and tired, I could have just sat there staring at them for hours.
I woke up again at 5:30 and this time packed up my equipment. Oliver and I hit the trail at 6 am. We did not see Lucky Hat or Ari all day. It was a tough hike with lots of snow and ups and downs. Oliver is faster hiking the downhills and I the uphills.
Where there was not snow, there was mud. We trooped along taking a couple of short breaks to dig cat holes or for me to filter water. As the day progressed, the snow became slushier and I slipped and slid more and more. Shortly after lunch, I stopped to fill up water and Oliver continued hiking. Once I started hiking again, I hit a downhill patch of snow and as I was sliding down it, I slipped and fell hard on my pack. I was fine, but my hip belt was ripped and the buckle broke. For the rest of the day, and until I get to South Lake Tahoe, I will have to hike with basically no hip belt. Thankfully, I had already planned on switching back to the pack I was using in the desert and my Mom had already sent it to the next town.
The rest of the day was spent much as the first part, but with more snow and rolling hills. When we were about 2.5 miles from the place where we planned on camping, we hit trail magic. A man named Chipmunk and Dave were cooking up eggs and they had a table and chairs to sit and eat. We joined the 3 other hikers already there. We had cereal, chocolate milk, and bananas, along with eggs and bread. By far and away the best trail magic so far. I demolished 4 eggs and 3 pieces of bread along with a bowl of cereal and a banana. Chipmunk and Dave were getting ready to pack up and then they were done doing trail magic for the season. I was very grateful to be one of their last customers. Each year they has been coming out to the same place and doing trail magic for a few days.
The last couple miles passed quickly and we got to camp around 6:30. I decided to give Cowboy camping a go and did not set up my tent, just my ground cloth.