16 April 2021
Heart Bar Creek to Onyx Summit
PCT Mile 242.2 to 252.1
Brrrrrrrrrr!!!! Our water bottles froze last night. And we heard from folks at the hotel that it got down to 26 degrees!
I managed to stay warm wearing all my clothes in my sleeping bag — but just from the waist up! My legs and feet were quite cold, and I didn’t really sleep after about 2am.
Maybe I need more for my legs than a 2 ounce pair of wind pants and some short-shorts! I texted Half Cookie and asked her to bring my capilene base layer bottoms to Big Bear. So much for this experiment in ultralight….
It was also miserable deciding whether to pee or stay warm. Maybe time for a pee bottle, too!
On the plus side, I’ve decided that I don’t use the umbrella enough to keep carrying it, so the base weight of my pack should stay the same.
Since I was cold, I packed up quick and told Goose I would meet him at Coon Creek Cabin. Within 15 minutes of hiking, I could finally feel my fingertips!
I poked around the cabin, then sat down for a snack. Fifteen minutes later, Goose showed up, jazzed by the beautiful terrain.
A couple miles later we passed the 250 mile mark and a weird private zoo right by the trail. I’ve seen animals here before, but there were none today.
We thought we had made it to Onyx Summit and turned down a road about a mile too soon. D’oh! We climbed back up to trail and made short work of the remaining distance.
Since we arrived at the road several hours before Half Cookie was supposed to get in, we decided to hitch into town.
Once again, we got super lucky. Within 5 minutes, Richard, a retired metalworker, pulled over and offered us a ride. He already had another hiker in the car (“Barnfart”) and we all crowded in.
Richard was larger than life, telling us stories about building things in LA like Frank Geary’s Disney Hall opera house. He also drove us by his house so we could “come find him if we needed absolutely anything.” And when we got to town he toured us around before dropping us at our hotel, showing us where to eat, drink, and buy gear. A one man Big Bear encyclopedia!
Our rooms weren’t ready yet, so Goose and I went to Maggio’s and got pizza and beer.
By 1:30pm we were able to check in and clean up and by 3pm both our lovely wives arrived. Yay!
A Pants-less False Economy
Three point five ounces:
That’s just how much weight I saved
With my frozen legs