Day 163: Back on the Road 

September 24, 2017: Hiked zero miles, ran a few 

Whatever sickness Colton has been battling finally hit me. I woke up in the middle of the night with a horrible headache, sore throat, stuffed nose, and aching ears. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I propped a bunch of pillows under my head and took some ibuprofen and had a fitful night of sleep. I tossed and turned until I finally pulled myself out of bed around 10:00. After moving around a bit and taking some vitamins, drinking water, and gargling some diluted oregano oil I felt way better. I needed to get outside and get some fresh air so I went for a run and felt a million times better. I sat in my mom’s hot tub to try and sweat my sickness out and hung out with my little brother for a bit. 

Since we were both feeling a little better we decided to hit the road and finish this trail before it never happens. 

We packed up and said goodbye and hit the highway. It felt funny to be heading back to the trail in our own car instead of getting a ride from family or having to hitchhike. 

The car ride didn’t help my body much in feeling better, but I just know if I can get back to the trail and start hiking I’ll feel better. The trail cures all. While it was nice to have some time off to relax, have free time, and see family, my body is not dealing very well with all this sitting. I’m so used to walking all day that things just don’t work right if I’m not. I’m more than ready to start hiking again, even if it is only for a few days. We have had a purpose every day for five months and not having one suddenly every day can make you start to go a little neurotic. 

The drive was pretty and encouraged us that the weather for our hiking would be favorable.

It felt funny to be back on Highway 395, a road we traveled on a few times this summer. It brought back some good memories. 

As we got closer to the Sierras we could see the mountains in the distance that we would soon be hiking in. And once again, they were covered in snow. 

We turned off Highway 395 onto Sonora Pass as the sun was sinking behind the mountains. When we got to the top where the trailhead is, it was a whopping 35 degrees at 7:00. There was a PCT hiker sitting on the side of the road and we asked him what he was doing and he said he was waiting for his friends who were right behind him and then was gonna try to get down to the campground and store at Kennedy Meadows North, where we had camped a couple months ago. So of course we gave him and his friends a ride down and picked up another hiker, Cole, on the way who we had actually camped with in Oregon. The store is about a 15 minute drive down the other side of the mountain and by the time we dropped them off it was dark. It was also about 13 degrees warmer down there compared to the pass so we decided to camp there instead and hopefully give our bodies one more night of a little bit warmer weather to recover from our colds.

We set up camp and cooked dinner in the dark. Colton had a beef stroganoff (barf) Mountain House meal from his dad and I was back to a good old mashed potato and top ramen tortilla. Yum. And for once, my stomach didn’t instantly reject food. Looks like I really might be living off this stuff for awhile. 

Now we’re bundled in all our clothes in our tent and we even have our sleeping bag liners again. And we’re still freezing. I don’t know if it really is that cold, if we’re feeling colder because we’re sick or from not having our body heat raised from hiking all day, or if we’ve gotten soft from sleeping inside a warm house for over a week. But I think we’re in to get our butts kicked one more time before we finish this trail. 

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