Daily Mileage: 14.35 (seriously all these decimals are ridiculous, we walk more than the exact trail miles every single day)
When you wake up to a sunrise as amazing as today's you just can't rush to get out of bed. I opened my eyes and just smiled, today was going to be good.
Looking around it seemed like we all had the same idea, savor the view and hide in our sleeping bags as long as possible to do so.
Our pink clouds left us, the sun actually rose and we hit the trail. I knew today had a big descent down into Belden Town and I spent half the morning guessing where I was going, wrong almost the whole time as the trail wound this way and that.
And then the trail showed its true colors for the day. Dropping something like 4000 ft over some pretty darn long overgrown switchbacks. As I neared the bottom it seemed to take forever, dodging poison oak and begging the trail to just let me down already. Across some train tracks and down a road and we were suddenly in another world. There were people everywhere, many of them much hipper than us. Even though we were dressed in our finest gear, after all it was Friday tie day. We had heard Belden was a bit strange and had raves all the time, but I guess it's just some big music venue because they were setting up for a festival while we wandered over to the store. So much activity! Belden Town is a strange little place but has fantastic people watching. The store was not to badly stocked but I had a friend in Quincy and Quincy also has a natural food co-op so it didn't take too long to decide to hitch into a real town for the afternoon. Turns out it was one of the best hitches we've gotten. An older couple in a camper took us to town. We actually got to sit at a little table snacking the whole way admiring the view from our mobile living room. They were super nice and had just crewed at Western States, plus she had finished before which is amazing. If you have no idea what I'm talking about check out ultra running, I feel like its our groups new little obsession. I'd blame caveman but it's partly my fault for putting ultra runner podcasts on my phone. But it's great listening to interviews by people who are really passionate about something and it has some good parallels to thru hiking.
We checked out the Safeway and then made camp across the street from the co-op in the beautifully shady park. Seeing friends, eating and enjoying Quincy. Great afternoon.
I got my much craved watermelon and we put together a great resupply from the co-op. somehow the hours sped by and we didn't make it back to the trailhead until almost 8. By the time we actually managed to start hiking with our insanely heavy packs (it's a short 93 mile section so we have almost only fresh food, delicious and amazing but heavy) we made it a whole mile to the first water and crashed on the bridge over Indian Creek. Just another Best Day Ever.
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