Hi, my name is Isko Salminen.
I'm an adventure seeker and I love exploring nature with my camera and Australian Shepherd called Fire

Day 11: Nero at Idyllwild

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Date: May 10, 2017
Miles: 6.4 miles (10.3km), from mile 145.4 to Paradise Cafe. 
Health: My legs are a bit tired but feeling good. Few small blisters but nothing bad. 

The storm never hit us, but we spend the entire night and morning inside a cloud. Everything was covered in a fine mist. Everyone woke up slow and late. The short hike to Paradise Cafe meant that we didn't have to hurry in the usual manner.

 Waking up.  

Waking up.  

While others left, I stayed a little behind as I wanted to dry my tarp out a little. It was covered in sand and I didn't want to put it in my pack like that.

 The trail wiggling down before getting up again.  

The trail wiggling down before getting up again.  

Soon I was on the trail hiking after the others. I left with a Korean hiker called Choy. We generally hike a very similar pace but this morning I was having trouble keeping up with him. Not long after that I was passed by Hercules. While he's a fast hiker, I knew he left way after me and shouldn't have caught up to me this fast.

Wondering why me legs didn't work, I realized that I hadn't done any stretching in three days. I stopped, did a quick stretching session on the trail with my backpack on, and started hiking again. What a difference! I was pack to my old pace.

 Hiking in to clouds.  

Hiking in to clouds.  

I ate few crumbled fruit bars and noticed I had cell coverage. I hadn't talked to my parents for a while so I called them a FaceTime audio call. We talked for so long that I made it to the junction where you hike along the road to Paradise Cafe.

 Road walk to Paradise Cafe.  

Road walk to Paradise Cafe.  

After a short road walk I met with others inside. I sat down at the counter. I guess you smell bad when the gentleman on the counter, over two seats away, moves his seat further away from you. And after a while moves even further away.

I'm so happy to get to Idyllwild today and to be finally able to wash my clothes.

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 Dragon (Pin), Justine, Me, Andrew, Choy, Blis (Theo).  

Dragon (Pin), Justine, Me, Andrew, Choy, Blis (Theo).  

We ate a big breakfast but sadly couldn't wait for the famous burgers as they started to serve them only after 11am.

 Hitchhiking is an art.  

Hitchhiking is an art.  

It was time to hitchhike to Idyllwild. We were told, and seen from the Cafe, that people usually get a ride in less than five minutes. After about 20 minutes and no luck we called for a "taxi". A local gentleman gave us a ride in his pickup.

 It's comfy at the back.  

It's comfy at the back.  

Once we arrived to town, others had already arranged a lodge for us. A lodge with two adjoining parts. We soon opened the door between the parts and had one large lodge with girls and Blü on the other side and us guys on the other.

 Idyllwild.  

Idyllwild.  

The mission for Idyllwild was simple: wash clothes, get a shower, resupply, and eat real food. We took showers and send all our dirty, smelly clothes to laundry, and then headed out wearing what ever we had in our bags that wasn't dirty. Some wore trash-bags as a skirt, some towels, others wore their rain gear. People around town didn't seem to mind though.

 The local movie theater.  

The local movie theater.  

I needed to visit the local gear store to see if they had the Altra's in my size. Fyre joined me and we went up the hill to the store. Luckily they had my size, so now it was time to go down to the post office to ship my old shoes, and the new ones I bought from Warner Springs back to Mikko in San Diego. Now if my feet still grow, I have the Altra's in half size larger.

 Gear store.  

Gear store.  

The rest of the day was just spend on doing town chores and getting ready to head out tomorrow. We needed to resupply five days worth of food to make the over 90 miles to Big Bear.

 Got my photo on the wall with Blü.  

Got my photo on the wall with Blü.  

 My way-too-big pizza. I suck at converting inches.  

My way-too-big pizza. I suck at converting inches.  

At five we all congregated to the pizza shop where we got our photos taken and pinned to the PCT 2017 wall. I accidentally ordered a way too large pizza as I'm still not good with inches. I carried the rest of the pizza back to the lodge and we opened the huge box wine Blü had bought. He was going to carry the rest of it tomorrow up to the summit of San Jacinto. His strategy seems to be to carry more and more gear as the trail goes on, I want to go the other way around.

 Justine getting a first aid kit shakedown from Blü.  

Justine getting a first aid kit shakedown from Blü.  

At the lodge everyone worked on their gear, then others went to sleep or enjoyed the complimentary wifi. I worked on my site to get up to speed with all the posts as I was lagging behind. I finally finished everything at 3am and got to sleep for few hours before the wake up call and our ride to the trailhead the next morning.