Day 20 – escape the vortex

May 13th
Miles: 266 to 275

Woke this morning having an issue breathing because of the altitude. Big Bear lake is at 7,000 and I could feel it pretty hard at times. To calm myself I did an old exercise where you flex muscles from your toes up to the top of your head and back down to your toes. It relaxes your muscles so you can sleep or calm down. Things you learn when you are high strung when younger.  Little breathing and muscle relaxation techniques which allow sleep can be a big help.

Finally got up and showered and started the process of packing the bag to get back on the trail. We could not take the shuttle to the trail because we still had to meet up with a trail buddy who was injured and was coming in slow with very bad shin splints and we needed to go to the store.

Pete got in, he had had to take 12 200 mg ibuprofen just to walk in and was planning a seven day stay to try to heal up. I didn’t have to the heart to tell him about some of the other hikers we had seen with the same thing who were going off trail. I hope it works our for him but I would not hold my breath.  At any rate, seven days is a long time on trail. About 100 to 200 miles depending on where.

We all we out for breakfast at this place called Grizzly Manor and one friend, English Johnny tried their food challenge,  which is eating six large pancakes.  He did not make it.


After, we said our goodbyes and went and got our packs and took the bus to Vons where I got some foot cream for my feet and some new smart water bottles.  Then we hitched to the trail and started hiking though by this time it was late so we only made it nine miles. Luckily our friends from Sweden and Belgium were also going slow getting out of town and so there is a group of six of us camped here.

One issue for me is my ankle which is having some problems I was hurt app bad coming into town I didn’t realize that my ankle was also hurt. I can still hike 2.5 miles per hour but feel slow at that speed.

It is cold and I am cowboy camping so need to cut this short.

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