Wednesday, April 28, 2021
Elevation gain/loss: 8947’/11,014′
Start: Bench Camp, Holcomb Creek
End: campsite on a beach at Silverwood Lake
With a colder night forecast, I decided to wait to get up until 5am. I didn’t sleep very soundly, but waited until my alarm went off to get up. I was on trail and hiking by 5:50am.
I made good time in the morning, arriving at the hot springs by 10:30am where I took a half-hour break in the shade. It was an interesting place, with well more than half of the occupants being naked.
The second half of the day dragged, as I hiked along in the direct sun with no shade. After the trail left the canyon, I crossed a shallow creek and after filtering some water, I continued my hike out and around the nearby mountains. There was little water or shade to be had; I saw another Rosy Boa snake chilling on the trail and a few Striped Racer snakes.
The trail has slowly gotten closer and closer to civilization, making the trail feel both more quiet (with fewer PCT hikers) and much louder (with day hikers and 4x4s). I’ve been hearing commercial airlines overhead since yesterday afternoon. I wanted to stop hiking around 27-28 miles today, but there wasn’t water or anywhere to camp so I kept going.
I had cell service so I called Toby and chatted for my last hour of hiking, which helped take my mind off of my aching painful feet. I ended up camping in a little nook on a beach on Silverwood Lake, within 1/4 mile of a road, because there hadn’t been any other places to camp for a number of miles.
I cooked dinner sitting on rocks by the lake and enjoyed watching the sun set over the mountains. Despite the close proximity to the road, I slept pretty well and without any interruptions.