Day 2: Running Backwards?

April 19, 2017

Total miles: 17.5

Start: Lake Morena (mile 20.1)

End: mile 37.6

Total elevation gain/loss: 3261.4/1249.3ft

I didn’t sleep very well last night, which is normal for my first night on the trail. We were up at 6am and out of camp by 7:10. Not bad for a first morning (that included doing laundry in the sink at the campground and a lot of damp gear from the fog), but there’s room for improvement.

Last view of Lake Morena.


More morning bunnies

About 1.7 miles down the trail, Michael noticed that my washed underwear wasn’t hanging from my pack. Uh oh. I guess it was dropped as we rearranged gear outside the bathroom. I was ready to call the underwear a loss, but Michael wasn’t. He ran (yes ran, downhill at least) back to find it while I set out all of our gear in the sun to dry.

Drying all our gear (aka, a “garage sale”).

An hour later he returned with underwear in hand. My hero! We packed up our now dry stuff and continued down the trail.

Collecting water at our first wet stream crossing. Obviously, I was aiming for a flattering view of Michael 😉

Our first 6 miles or so were slow going because we had two wet stream crossings, meaning that there was no way to rock-hop across them. We had to take off our shoes, cross, then dry our feet and put our shoes back on. Between the lost underwear and the crossings, we’d only gone about 6.5 miles by 11am.  The area was really pretty though, with lots of oaks that reminded us of home.

We pushed on until about 1pm.  Most of the time we walked separately, with Michael a few minutes behind me. I successfully tried out my umbrella for a bit, which made it much cooler. Unfortunately, I haven’t figured out how to keep the umbrella up if there is any wind.

Desert flowers

I’m obsessed with the blooming yucca plants.

One of the few lizzards that didn’t run away from me.

My feet started to increasingly hurt and I finally figured out why. While I’m wearing the same shoes that I wore on the JMT and Camino, I recently swapped the insoles to provide more support for my heels. The insoles must take up more room and cause crowding. I’m hoping that I can pick up a new pair of shoes when we get to Mt. Laguna tomorrow because I can’t imagine going another 200+ miles on these (I have a pair stashed that I can access when we get to Big Bear).

Umm.. what?

We passed up a swimming hole located about 100 yards below the trail at mile 30 because it had no shade to take a mid-day siesta. Luckily the water source at mile 32 had lots of shaded areas, so we rested for a couple hours during the afternoon heat. Today seemed hotter than yesterday and I think that tomorrow is supposed to be even worse.

We set off after our siesta at about 3:45 and walked until we reached a campsite at mile 37.6. This last section was a bit overgrown at times, but afforded us lovely views of the valley below. Our camp is about 0.1 miles from a water source. After setting up our tent (easier today with softer ground), Michael went off to find water while I set up camp.

We promptly fell asleep at 8pm. Hiking is hard work! In our defense, the two people camping near us were already asleep when we showed up at 5pm.

Current ailments:

Elizabeth: 2 blisters (old), maybe one new; chafing (cont.)

Michael: misc. muscle tightness

2 thoughts on “Day 2: Running Backwards?

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