PCT Day 110 – Tuesday August 1
I5 & Soda Creek Road Mile 1498.7 to Indian Creek Mile 1502.4
PCT Miles Hiked Today: 3.7
Total PCT Miles Hiked: 1114.9
Feet Ascended Today: 1061
Feet Descended Today: 402
Current Elevation: 2790
I was up at 5:00 am today and on my way to the airport at 6:15. While packing my bag this morning I discovered that I had misplaced my headphones. Ugh. I pretty much have my headphones in constantly as I hike, listening to either music or podcasts or audiobooks. I didn’t have time to search for them so I left without them, hoping to find new headphones at the airport. I have an iPhone 7 which no longer comes with a headphone jack – Apple provides special headphones that plug into the lightening USB port. I did find a replacement pair at the airport for $45. Good lord! I handed over the money, feeling robbed, but I was desperate.
My plane landed in Medford, Oregon at 10:00 am. I grabbed my bag from baggage claim and hopped in a cab to REI. I needed to get fuel as I wasn’t able to bring my own on the plane. A Trader Joe’s was conveniently located next door to the REI, so I headed over there to buy some bagels, cheese, and last minute snacks. I buried the cheese in the bottom of my food bag in a an effort to keep it cool.
My bus didn’t leave until 2:00 pm so I had some time to kill. I sat outside the Trader Joe’s in the shade, working on my blog and trying to keep cool. A lady offered me an iced tea, which was very nice, although I don’t drink caffeinated tea. When you’re dressed like a hiker in town near the PCT, random people sometimes just offer you free stuff. A girl could get used to this 🙂
I took a cab over to the Greyhound station around noon and hung out in their little air-conditioned waiting area. The ladies working the counter seemed harried and weren’t particularly friendly. They followed every rule and seemed annoyed when you didn’t know the rules. I got the feeling they had to deal with a lot of obnoxious people. One passenger kept walking around aggressively asking everyone for money. Another passenger purchased a ticket online and asked the staff for a paper copy of the ticket so he could get on the bus.
“Oh no, we can’t do that,” the lady said, clearly giving zero corndogs, “our records show the ticket has been printed. The only thing we can do is to issue you a new ticket for $99.”
“But I haven’t printed my ticket yet,” the passenger sputtered, “that’s why I am here!”
“You must have selected “print at home” on the website. If you do that we can’t help you. We can only help you if you select “will call ticket”. You’ll have to go to the library across the street to print your ticket,” she lectured.
“But my bus comes in 20 minutes!” he protested, dumbfounded.
“Well I guess you better hurry then,” she said as he raced out the door, lugging suitcases in each had as he went. Poor guy.
The bus ride to Weed, California was uneventful. I disembarked at 4:00 pm at a tiny bus station in the middle of nowhere. The only other passenger to get off in Weed was supposed to get off in Medford but had slept through the entire bus stop. The driver had unloaded his luggage in Medford and this poor guy was now in Weed with his luggage in another state.
“Man,” he said, looking dazed, “maybe I shouldn’t have had that edible before I got on the bus. I mean, it sounded like a good idea at the time. It’s just a bus ride. What could go wrong?” What indeed. The irony of him being stuck in Weed, California because he was high as balls after eating a weed cookie seemed to be lost on him.
I walked into town and purchased a roll of toilet paper (which I had somehow forgotten to pack) and waited for the local county bus across from Ray’s Grocery Store. The bus arrived around 5:00 pm and drove through the town of Mt. Shasta before dropping me off in Dunsmuir at Manfredi’s gas station, which was the closest stop to the PCT. I was 5 miles away but the shortest route involved getting on the freeway and going southbound two stops. So I bought a deli sandwich for dinner and stuck out my thumb. I got a ride 20 minutes later and was on the PCT by 7:00 pm.
Yay! It was so good to be back on the PCT! I hiked until it got dark and found a spot to camp next to a creek. As I was setting up my tent, another hiker walked by and after a moment of conversation I recognized him. Tooth Fairy! He’s section hiking the PCT this year – I met him last month right before I hiked into Chester. He set up camp nearby and soon I was fast asleep.