Day 64: Relaxin’ in Mammoth

June 17, 2017: Hiked 2.5 miles out to Horseshoe Lake

I don’t know how we did it, but we slept in until 6:45 this morning. I woke up full of energy even after not sleeping very much so I decided to take a little walk down to the gas station to pick up the few things we couldn’t find at Vons yesterday.

The morning was nice and cool and there were a few people out walking around and opening up shop for the day, but it was still quiet and peaceful. 

The busiest places were a few coffee shops I passed. I am falling more in love with this town by the minute.

I didn’t think I would be hungry since we ate so late last night, but by the time I got back to the hotel, I was famished. Our hotel had a surprisingly good continental breakfast for being the cheapest hotel in town and we stuffed our faces with english muffins slathered with peanut butter and jam, cereal, donuts, hard-boiled eggs, o.j., and lots of coffee on my part. I think they had to restock the food bar after we finished. 

After breakfast we layed around our room until checkout, trying to get as much time off our feet as possible. We stuffed our bags full with all our food and grumbled with how heavy they were when we got ready to leave. I think the hardest part of leaving town and getting back on the trail is knowing how heavy your pack is going to be for a few days. 

We wanted to make the most of our day of relaxation so we took the free shuttle back downtown. 

We walked around the little shopping center and got some salads from Vons and found a nice little courtyard to eat lunch in. 

After lunch we went to see a matinee of the new Mummy movie at the little two-screen movie theater. We were two of about five people in the theater. We snuck some gummy bears in, but of course Colton insisted he needed popcorn after smelling someone else’s. I didn’t think we would be able to finish the giant bag after just eating lunch and was excited to have leftover candy and popcorn for tonight, but of course it was almost all gone before the movie even started. I feel like we’re bottomless pits that just never fill up for more than 30 minutes. 

I thought the movie was entertainig. Colton wasn’t the biggest fan. I think he was just scared from all the jumpy scenes. It was so nice to just relax and be entertained and not have to hike, do chores, plan, shop, etc. 

After the movie we ran into a couple other hiker friends who told us they had ended up sleeping in their tents behind the grocery store last night because they got in late and the rest of the town was sold out. I guess we lucked out getting in early enough. 

We picked up some sandwiches, chips, and potato salad for dinner and some bagels, bananas, and donuts for breakfast tomorrow morning and caught the shuttle back up to The Village. 

There was supposed to be a different shuttle line that would take us up to the base of the mountains from where we hitched into town yesterday, but after waiting around for it for 30 minutes, we reread the map and realized that line didn’t start operation until July. Oops.
We walked out to the road out of town and were able to hitch right away from a nice couple who were going exactly where we were. They were excited to hear about our adventure on the PCT and it’s always fun to enthrall people with our stories. 

They dropped us off at Twin Lakes, which was packed with people out hiking, fishing, BBQing, kayaking, eating at the lodge, and there was even a wedding going on. 

The road was closed from here on up so we started hiking up the hill. We passed about 50 horses that weren’t there yesterday at a pack ranch. 

And also passed a truck laying cones down the road for a half-marathon that’s happening tomorrow, starting just a little ways down from where we’re camping. Now, we’re in pretty good hiking shape at this point, but I think any other kind of exercise would kill us now. We laughed about how we probably couldn’t even run a half mile right now, let alone a half-marathon, even though we hike close to a full marathon some days. We decided when we’re home for our next break we’re going to try and run one day just to see how bad it really is. 

We had a gorgeous view walking up, looking over Twin Lakes. 

And then all the sudden a bear popped out on the road less than 100 yards in front of us.

 It just wandered across the road, drank some water from a puddle, and wandered back across before slinking back into the trees. We were excited to finally see a bear…and a little scared we saw it so close to where we are camping. But we’ve camped just as close to where people told us they saw bears before, so hopefully we have a peaceful night. 

We finished our walk to Horseshoe Lake where we set up our tent right on an open patch of blacktop. The road is still covered in snow right before the lake so I don’t think we’ll have too many visitors tonight. 

It was already getting chilly so we piled on the warm clothes and chowed down on our dinner. It was so nice to eat real food on the trail and not even have to cook it. Now if only we could find a way to carry a week’s worth of sandwiches with us all the time. 

After dinner we just hung out outside for a bit enjoying the beautiful views.

The lake was so still, you almost couldn’t tell which was water and which was the sky. 

We even saw a coyote walking around. 

Hopefully he doesn’t smell our extra food bags and try and steal some food tonight!

Then we realized it was 8:30, our bedtime! So we jumped in the tent, Colton read, I wrote my blog, and now we’re praying for an animal-free night and hopefully no crazy runners trying to warm up, running around our tent in the snow in the morning. 

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3 thoughts on “Day 64: Relaxin’ in Mammoth

  1. It was a surprise to see your blog so soon after waiting days for your last blog of many days. I have thought of your trekking in snow and crossing in icy streams as we have been sweltering in 108 degree heat in Santa Rosa while ignoring you said it was hot sometime. Wishing you well as you head north continuing your journey. Best of luck.

    Liked by 1 person

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