Friday April 7 – day 12

PCT mile 166.52 to 168.60 (plus 14.2 to get to Idyllwild)

The wind howled all night and was still blowing hard when I awoke pre-dawn.  I found that everything inside the tent covered in fine sand.  I packed everything I could while in the tent and only then exited to take down and pack the tent.  I was worried that with nothing in the tent the wind may pull the stakes and the whole thing would blow off the ridge.  I quickly dropped the tent.  I didn’t even try to fold up my Tyvek footprint, instead just rolled and folded it and stuffed it in my pack.

The sunrise was beautiful but warned of an approaching storm.

I set off to traverse the ridge a few more miles then drop down into the high desert near Hemet.  It turned out that the wind was strongest right where I camped.  I flew down the hill sighting a fine looking Alligator Lizard along the way.

I did not try to carb thug guy though – their bite can draw blood (been there, done that). 

I dropped down to a over road that I followed for a few miles.  I walked past the Ronald McDonald House Apple Canyon Center and saw this cool sign at the entrance.

Let’s hope we get a good crop of leaders soon!

Here’s a view of the ridge I just descended.

Next I hiked a series of bicycle trails and dirt roads that will take me into downtown Idyllwild.  Along the way I caught this cute guy but could only photograph him when he stopped squirming.

A bit later I found this footprint that I believe to be a Mountain Lion track.

After a few miles uphill I finally crested my last ridge and descended into the cool town of Idyllwild.

And was welcomed

I immediately checked into my hotel room to drop my pack, visited the Post Office to get my resupply box and got a fresh salad and beer at the Pizza place next door.  The staff took my picture and posted it on their PCT Class of 2017 board — how cool is that!

The Idyllwild Inn where I’m staying is great – they have a laundry service and are super friendly and helpful!  Highly recommended.  

After a nap I donned my same but clean(er) clothes and had BBQ pork for dinner while a live jazz band serenaded me.  Nice!  It seems that Idyllwild is a music and outdoorsy kind of town.

I slept so well Friday night!

Thanks for reading!

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