Day 4 – 4/17
Mile mark 56-77
I wake looking at the sunrise from my favorite campsite yet. Trying to get a bit more sleep, I roll to the west and I see soft pink clouds pulled across the sky with the moon slowly fading behind them. I no longer want to sleep more and am up quickly to admire the view while having breakfast.
The miles start off smoothly, and I stop for my first sock change around 9am. My feet have felt relatively good up to this point, but when I start again I feel a hot spot on my left foot. I stop again and tape up the forming blister. The trail here is often covered in golf ball size rocks which create a veritable torture board for my foot. The tape doesn’t seem to help and by mile 13, my foot is really bothering me.
I push through the miles to get to the next water source. The trail starts to wind down the mountain, all the while I see, off in the distance, an even bigger mountain with switchbacks going up its face. For awhile the trail heads away from the mountain, but when I get to the bottom of the valley it makes an abrupt left and heads back towards the switchbacks.
At this point I’ve decided to go just a little farther and get to scissors crossing to hitch hike to Julian to take a rest day. I tell myself there’s no point in rushing up the mountain and hurting myself this early. What started off as my best day yet has changed into the worst.