Miles today: 12.3

Trail miles: 341.9

Elevation: 3055

Spinning on the turntable: The Hooters: Nervous night

Green hills
Green hills

We started our day with a humid 500 foot climb out of camp. The landscape is very green. It’s a nice contrast from the brown rocks that we spend so much time hiking on.

Furry red bugs
Furry red bugs

We saw several of these red bugs on the ground but have no idea what they are. Anyone know?

I finally managed to log into the insurance website for Cobra but couldn’t find a way to activate the coverage. I called the support number and they told me to use a laptop since their website isn’t configured for cell phones. What year is this!? Sigh. I tried to set it up via phone but was told it’s against federal regulations.

Our plan today was to hike into Cajon pass and do a small two day resupply to hike into Wrightwood over the following two days. It’s about 5000 feet elevation gain over thirty miles with no opportunity for water resupply.

Cajon Pass in the distance
Cajon Pass in the distance

It’s so much fun to hike on the ridge lines and see the upcoming trail.

Noelle on the PCT
Noelle on the PCT

We were passed by lots of folks on their way to Cajon. Cajon has the distinction of having a McDonalds .4 miles off trail. It’s just a burp of a gas stop on the freeway. We resupplied at the gas/convenience store and then went to McDonalds. Meh.

Yellow sunflowers
Yellow sunflowers

There were lots of hikers hanging out and the big discussion topic was how much water to carry for the next 30 mile section. A French couple was laying odds on a trail magic water resupply, but a south bound hiker told us that the water cache was empty. I think the French couple left with about five liters between them. (A bit light if you ask me…)

I loaded up with six liters and Noelle loaded up with three liters. The additional weight is daunting and takes our backpacks to their weight limits. There’s no safe option (for us) except to carry a lot of water.

Noelle started feeling rather miserable this afternoon while we were at McDonalds so she contacted her PCP for a phone consultation. Based on the PCP’s input we decided to swing by urgent care for Noelle to be seen.

We snagged an Uber and off we went. We separated ourselves from the masses in the urgent care waiting room due to our stench and general state of appearance.

It's all good now!
It’s all good now!

We’ve gotten accustomed to our appearance on the trail. We’re hiker trash…but in a town…20 miles from the trail, we just look and smell like homeless folks.

Naturally our insurance was null and void so we paid cash for Noelle’s visit and cash for her prescriptions. I’m so glad that we have the ability to pay cash. Once we actually get the Cobra coverage active it will be retroactive to the date of lapse (yesterday) so it isn’t a big deal. Inconvenient, but not a big deal. I listened to the urgent care check in person send a lady to the ER because they didn’t have insurance. Crazy.

After finishing up at Urgent Care and the pharmacy we decided to head back towards the trail head to grab a hotel. It’s a little closer to our “tribe” and we won’t stand out quite so much, plus the motel is cheaper.

We’re going to zero for a day or so and allow Noelle to recover.