Wrightwood to Casa de Luna

Posted on: Monday May 30, 2016 Pacific Crest Trail

This post was written in my sleeping bag at the end of a long day. Please excuse any errors.

wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna We zero in Wrightwood. As always, town stops are a mess of laundry, resupply, hanging out and eating as much as possible. We lounge around our rented cabin, watching Wild and heckling. Then we go to the bar and sing Ain’t No Mountain High Enough and 500 miles at karaoke.

wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna From Wrightwood, it’s an easy hitch to the trail. We stand on the side of the road looking confused and a woman pulls over immediately. She’s going to climb Baden Powell too, but she is a terrifying driver. Sometimes the rides to the trail are the most sketchy part of the trip. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna And then we are climbing. Mount Baden Powell goes up and up and up and there are a few sketchy snow traverses to keep us on our toes. And then, on the summit ridge, a 1,500 year old tree, twisted and gnarled by time and wind. I hug it, before heading to the top. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna We eat dinner at the summit. Bear Bait wanders off and finds a campsite just behind the top. We watch the sunset and then the stars pop out one by one. All around us, city lights twinkle, but the ribbon of the PCT is surrounded by darkness. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna We linger on the summit in the morning and then we are heading down the ridge. Then, our third detour. There’s a four mile route with a road walk, or a twenty mile trail route. Half the group takes the road walk. The other half of us decide to take the trail. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna Seconds after we leave the PCT, the trail deteriorates. Scree covers the mountainside and it’s all we can do to keep from sliding down to the bottom. I hit a cactus and blood trickles down into my gaiters. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna We follow the trail along a river, then between incredible rock formations. The trail is wider, but still sketchy, with rusty metal. Then we are climbing, up and up, back towards the trail. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna We spend the next few days chasing our friends. It’s four twenty mile days, but it is amazing how quickly that becomes the new normal. The nights are cold and the mornings are frosty. My feet hurt, and one day I limp the last five miles, nursing a blister. Time for new shoes. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna And then we are in Agua Dulce, heading for Hiker Heaven. Our friends are there and we are reunited. There’s a run to REI, and Clammy gives me his spot so I can get new shoes. The selection sucks, but I find something I think will work. I’ve gone up a whole size. wrightwood-to-casa-de-luna My trail family is drinking beer around the fire when I get back. Someone plays a guitar and there’s a harmonica. In the morning, we get breakfast, then head back to the trail. Twelve miles, a camp, and then twelve more miles to Casa de Luna, our last trail angels for a while.

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Eloise Robbins (Fun Size)

About the Author

Eloise Robbins (Fun Size) is a writer, triple crown thru hiker, and adventurer. She is a lover of the outdoors, hiking, canoeing, and most of all mountains.

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