Cactus nuzzle in looking down on Scissors Crossing near Julian.
hike blog

PCT Day 135, water cache to Scissors Crossing (Julian), 14 miles

If you have the courage to fail, then you have the courage to succeed. – Shalane Flanagan

Cactus nuzzle in looking down on Scissors Crossing near Julian.
Cactus nuzzle in looking down on Scissors Crossing near Julian.

Desert sunrises are magnificent – orange light in the east as the full moon drops, deep pink on the other horizon. I sit up and make coffee noticing a tiny animal hole right next to my mat. OK, who did this? Were you coming or going? I never saw or heard a thing – no harm, no foul – hey, Ted, can I have one of your granola bars?

The land seems to fold in on itself from our vantage point high above.
The land seems to fold in on itself from our vantage point high above.
Prickly plants grab my legs and I'm glad I wear long pants.
Prickly plants grab my legs and I’m glad I wear long pants.
The PCT is well-known for its grand balcony walks.
The PCT is well-known for its grand balcony walks.

We pack up then fill our water bottles from the cache, rationing out the last of the electrolyte tablets. It seems only yesterday we had a huge pile of them, but it also feels like only yesterday Ted joined me to hike a few sections, and today is his last day on the trail.

The PCT is wide enough in the desert to avoid the "jumping" Cholla.
hike blog

PCT Day 131, ridge above Anza to Mike’s Place, 19 miles

There is nothing more pathetic than caution when headlong might save a life, even possibly, your own. – Meryl Streep

A cluster of barrel cactus in Anza-Borrego State Park.
A cluster of barrel cactus in Anza-Borrego State Park.

I wake before dawn in time to see a grapefruit slice of moon setting. The wind picks up and I tuck deeper into Big Greenie. It’s too gusty when we wake to make coffee from my bed, so we pack up first and I notice my sit pad is gone – the third time I’ve lost it on the PCT, the first near Shasta when Pilot found it, the second near Casa de Luna when Brass found it. This time, it’s the wind’s fault and it’s only after breakfast I see it caught in some spiky grass. Hooray for the desert!