Friday, April 23, 2021
Elevation gain/loss: 9843’/6657′
Start: Highway 74/Idyllwild
End: campsite at Tahquitz Valley Trail Junction
After sleeping in until 6:30am, I packed up and then went to grab a coffee where I met Recharge and chatted for a moment. Yesterday evening, Moe offered to take me back to trail in the morning, so I was ready to go at 7:30am. They were running a few moments behind but Moe and Wonderwoman and her friend very kindly picked me up and I was hiking by 8:15.
I brought 3 liters from town, which gave me plenty of water to get to Eagle Spring. Unfortunately, Eagle Spring was dry, aside from half an inch of mud-colored water. So I struggled onward, intent on making it to Tahquitz Creek (the next on-trail water source). But the ridge was hot and demanding and so I was nursing the last of my water. Within a mile of the top of the climb, a 2020-2021 SOBO PCT hiker MotherFire very kindly gave me 8 oz of water.
I saw Hot Toddy again at the first campsite on the ridge. We chatted for perhaps 10 minutes before I pushed on for the next water source. Half a mile later, I crossed over some snow that was actively melting. Using my Polar bottle scoop, I was able to collect and then filter a liter of ice cold snow melt to tide me over until the creek, which gave me a jump on rehydrating and eating more of my snacks, none of which I wanted to eat while out of water.
My evening’s tent site at the trail junction was absolutely perfect – flat, surrounded by trees, with a rock to sit on, wind-free, great view, and all to myself.