Woke up with paradise cafe as my plan. Headed out solo but the cousins quickly caught up. Great sunrise and cooler morning temps made the first 1000 ft elevation gain a breeze.
Okay it's hard to see but sort of in the middle of the photo there is a small peak, that's where we came down from yesterday afternoon. Lots of rolling hills in this area!
Found a cool water cache, but at 0645 didn't need any extra water so more left for others. There was a hiker book to sign which was fun bc you can see who is near you on the trail.
Climbing started to get tougher and Joe caught up, always fun to hike with new people. We flip flopped for awhile staring at the views, bring scared by a pack of badly behaved dogs and wondered where the heck the trail was actually taking us.
After what felt like forever we saw the highway, which meant food was near! Plus we did the magical 10 by 10, a hiker thing where you hike 10 miles by 10 am. Basically bragging rights and the ability to slack off for the rest of the day. By 10:30 we had gone 13 PCT miles plus one off trail to get to the fabulous cafe.
Hours later, no seriously we didn't leave till 3 we had made friends, had our group catch up, lost some hiker friends to a ride to the nearest town and ate multiple amazing meals. So good.
Quick trip back to the trailhead, afternoon nap and the return of the cousins from idyllwild brought us a few miles closer to the massive climbing we will spend all of tomorrow enjoying.
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