I must have conked out at some point during the night and woke confused about where I was. Well, until the tent started to flap violently in the wind, then I recalled the nights events. Around 2am I had to re-wedge my trekking pole in the side of the door to hold the tent up in the gnarly winds and cover my face to keep the sand out. It was now 5:30 and I sat up and dressed in a hurry to get out of the tent and off this stupid mountain. Today, we go to town.
We broke camp and said goodbye to Horizon and Backup who camped next to us before hitting the trail. We climbed in the wind for a while before arriving at a water cache where we sat down and drank a pint of water while signing the register book. We would take no more breaks for the rest of the day. The trail was annoyingly constructed in this area with little ups and downs like BMX whoop-de-doos that were just tall enough to make you have to engage your uphill muscles and then down hill muscles immediately after, for miles. The trail also went down to go up and made stupid half circles on the top of a ridge line. We could see our destination a short distance by crow but took us 8 miles to finally get off the damn mountain. The trail annoys me sometimes especially when I'm hungry and want to be in town.
After a long, windy hike we finally got off the mountain and signed another register before sitting down at a picnic tabled to dump out our shoes. It was here that I figured out why I would continue to dump our my shoes when they were full of rocks but noting would come out. There are little air vent holes in the insoles of my shoes and the rocks are getting stuck inside them. I go to dump my shoes and the rocks hide out in these holes only to be released again when I start walking. After I popped them all out we headed for the road.
We were going to zero at my Dads house and he was going to pick us up at the trailhead but when we got there I realized I had no way to explain to him where I was. I figured Willow Springs Road next to a windmill wasn't going to suffice. We decided to try to hitch to Tehachapi proper and give him a pick up location from there. We passed Coppertone at the trailhead, the guy who makes the root beer floats, and he told us it was a really easy hitch. We thanked him and crossed the street. I hardly had my thumb out and we got a ride instantly.
We were picked up by a man and his dog in a big truck and we talked about the trail and his job and he was super nice. He gave us a ride to a Denny's right on the freeway where I could tell my dad to get us. We thanked him profusely and said good bye before heading into the restaurant.
We got some weird looks as we came in and ordered huge meals. Some of the locals chatted us up about the trail while we waited for my dad to arrive. My dad showed up shortly after we ate and went outside and it was great to see him!
He drove us back to his house where we showered, did laundry and ate for the rest of the day. It is so nice to have a day off and be with family.
Right now it's 10pm the following day and I am pooped. Our zero consisted of eating, sitting in the jacuzzi, sleeping, hanging out with my parents and eating. We ran all our errands and are pretty much ready to hit the trail tomorrow. I am trying not to buy into the 'Sierra Fear' and buy clothes and gear I don't need but I admit I'm a bit fearful about the conditions up there. Only a couple weeks and we'll be in the big boy mountains. That's pretty crazy!
Until tomorrow, goodnight!!