17th May 2015

Mileage 23.6 (38km)

Tylerhorse Canyon (541.5) to Roadside Camp (565.1)

The strong wind that justified the nearby wind farms had all but disappeared overnight. Our secluded campsite at Tylerhorse Canyon was calm and quiet. The result was a great nights sleep by all. Several of us had been advised that a water cache was well stocked about 8 miles from camp. 8 miles uphill. As a result I left camp with only 1 litre of water which was consumed when I had my second breakfast of coffee and oats while sitting on an exposed hillside overlooking the desolation of the Mojave Desert. It was about 9.30am when I limped into the water cache. It was not only well stocked with water but some apples and chairs to sit down and chillax. I arrived ahead of StoneFoot, Tink and Zig Zig and spent over an hour resting my aching body. There was still some pain in my ankle.

I walked maybe 2 hours from the water cache when I was unable to walk any further. It was almost impossible to put weight on my ankle. The pain was sharp, intense and specific. Right on the already stressed tendons. Luckily another hiker had some high strength anti-inflammatory medication and was gracious enough to allow me to temporarily ease the pain. This point of the hike was a low point for me. Sorry to sound down or negative but I thought I should mention, yet again that this is a tough hike, physically and mentally!

Twenty minutes after being medicated I was able to walk again. I still felt that my ankle was not happy with me but I was able to move. I discussed with my hiking buddies my thoughts. I wanted to make it into a nearby trail town to take some time off to let my body heal itself but that involved several more hours of walking. Despite the fatigue and ankle problems I suggested that we hike as far as I can without making things worse while I’m medicated. Camp as close as we can near a road which I can hitch hike into town. Short term pain for an easier day the next day.

Tink, StoneFoot, Zig Zag and I soldiered on to make camp only 1.5 miles from one of the major highways that link Las Vegas with the West Coast. It was 7pm and the 12 hours of hiking took its toll on all of us. We camped in a field complete with cows and the sounds of nearby Freight Trains.

Despite the pain and frustration I must also report that I am still in good spirits, positive and able to still dish out an equal amount of friendly banter among my hiking colleagues. But I am looking forward to some rest and relaxation in coming days.

 

nice place to rest and have second breakfast

  
  

chillaxing at the water cache with Faceplant and stonefoot

  

Tink and Stonefoot descending towards the windfarm

  

can you see stonefoot on the trail?

  

trail magic

 

15 Responses

  1. skahlua912

    Hope your ankle feels better quickly but think it’s great you’re listening to your body and letting it heal!!!

    • BikeHikeSafari

      No rush. There’s still lots of fresh snow in the sierras, not many getting through. Rain and snow forecast up there for the next 5-7 days.

      • Hobbes

        Now is an excellent time to take a break. Don’t know if you & your fellow hikers have seen the NOAA model that projects weather for specific GPS co-ordinates. Here’s what Crabtree meadows ranger station (11k) is supposed to look like for the next few days:

        http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lat=36.56&lon=-118.35&site=all&smap=1#.VVquYPlViko

        You can play around with the model to see what Kennedy meadows, Cottonwood look like; or for those who have already exited Kearsarge, they can dial in Rae (north of Glen), Marjorie (north of Pinchot), etc.

        Bottom line is sporadic snow showers at the regular camp spots. Whitney and the higher passes will of course be colder. We’re waiting until Tues to head due south.

        Hobbes

  2. Ian

    Yep. Get some rest. And I believe this is one month on the trail for you, no?

  3. Karen

    I hope you take a few days off and get some rest. Maybe get yourself an ankle brace, the neoprene type. I think the hardest and best part of the trail is yet to come! Maybe you can get into Tehachapi to an urgent care Dr. and get some of those super Tylenol or something for inflamation. Good luck and I hope you feel better.

  4. ADL

    Vit I certainly kept me on trail thru my blister ordeal which finally ended before KM thankfully. You Aussies are a tough, inspriational bunch as I found out following Muk Muk’s blog in 2013. Her on-trail videos are really something, esp. the one of her being stalked by a mtn lion throughout one night above Belden. ADL

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