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Mile 151.8 (paradise valley cafe) to Mile 166.6
The hike today was great... I was again happy to be walking alone after all the people time the past few days. The scenery began to change from desert to alpine forest and felt a little mini-Sierraish. The pine cones were certainly reminiscent of the giant cones in Sequoia and Yosemite -
Scout and I arrived at 166 (Forbes Ranch Trail Juncture) at 2:30... after some ridiculous switchbacks from 7000ft down to 5500 feet- his feet were hurting and he wanted to camp...I was feeling pumped and wanted us to push pass the dreaded Apache Peak section... but he was adamant we wait until morning... as I knew he was nervous about it and we were on a buddy system - I agreed - as we turned the corner - we saw Warp Drive heading up the hill...she turned around and decided to camp with us - and Andrea and her sister Ginger (who had joined her for a small part of the trail) texted they would push to make it there too.
It was the earliest in the day I had ever stopped and it was hard for me to let go and just enjoy it. However that changed with a little trail magic... Scout and Warp Drive decided to walk 1.2 miles to check a creek out for water, which we were all low on ... they returned to report that it was dry and we all resigned to no hot dinner - we gathered some snow for drinking water a little wary... then as Scout was setting up his tent he found - hidden in the bushes - a gallon of water left by a trail angel...seriously amazing! spirits lifted we laughed and chatted and discussed the obstacle that laid ahead the next day.