The Trails Angels

The past few days have been awesome and at times terrifying. After staying in Idllywild with Not A Chance, Carrot, Twinkle Toes and McButter, we decided to try and keep hiking together as a group known as the Trails Angels. Coming down from San Jacinto mountain we knew we couldn’t make it to the water fountain at the bottom of the 7000 foot elevation change over 20 miles. We slept about halfway down the mountain in an awesome open area surrounded by huge, snow capped mountains and the dry windy valley below, which was filled with wind turbines. We ate and laughed with Hi-Tek and Guthrie who were already there. The X-Men couple and two girls also joined us.
The next morning we headed down the mountain for 10 miles with little to no water. By 7 a.m. it was already burning hot and I was sweating profusely. Going downhill also really hurt my left knee. About 5 miles left and I had maybe 1/3 if a liter of water left, clearly not enough, but enough to moisten my dry mouth ever half hour or so. Carrot was completely out of water the whole hike down and was looking in real rough shape. About 3 miles from the water which we could see from our high view point I started suffering. Your brain starts to feel hot, your mouth and lips are bone dry and cracked, you start spacing out really bad as if you are drunk and you get a bad headache. It made me start to panic even though I was pretty sure I could make it to the water. I ran out about a mile before the water fountain and the thought of having no water in a burning dry desert is truly scary. Things go through your head like what if for some reason the water fountain doesn’t work? I am screwed, we’d all be doomed. There’s no more water for miles and you have to cross a valley that was over 100 degrees. Luckily we did make it to the fountain and it did work, but better yet, a trail angel named Tarzan had camped there and had fresh veggies with hummus for us as well. We dug in and almost cried at having all the water we could possibly desire. We were all really worried about Carrot but she finally came down and made it to the water but in very rough shape. She seemed so happy to be there but at the same time just beat, too exhausted to say anything. After awhile we all recovered from our ordeal and headed across the burning hot valley floor between the mountains and got to Ziggy and the Bear’s. We ate and resupplied there, met many friends and hang out for about 5 hours. Then at 4:30 we all headed out for another 10 miles or so along with Not A Chance who had been ahead of us all day. We slept in the white water river’s dry bed next to a small silty creek that disappeared under the gravel a little bit down the riverbed.

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