Mile 48 to mile 68
My leg fucking hurt today, y’all.
The trail has a way of crushing your ego, of reminding you how small you are. Of humbling you. When I started this trail all of three days ago I thought I was hot shit- I was all WOOHOO HIKE 28 MILES MY SECOND DAY! Even though I’d been exercising in the American fashion all winter, aka short bursts of physical activity followed by long periods of sitting, and my calf muscles were strong but my tendons were like rubbery spaghetti. So this morning I set out to do my second 28 mile day, after a sleepless night in which I froze my ass off b/c my sleeping pad is really pathetically thin and I had to do crunches in my sleeping bag periodically to keep from shivering- I set out and four miles in my knee froze up, there was some shooting pain, my hamstring hurt, my I.T. band, pretty much everything and I felt like the world was ending. I’d been shooting for scissors crossing but settled for a cistern with a spigot, took a bunch of ibuprofen and hobbled for sixteen miles. Limped, cried, ran out of water, the sun shined and the wind blew. By the time I reached the cistern the pain had gone away and I felt like I’d made the whole thing up but I’d learned my lesson so I unrolled my pad and settled for a 20 mile day which felt, in some strange universe, like failure.
Kerouac said: I have nothing to offer but my own confusion.
I’d like to admit here that I know nothing, not one single thing. That my heart is restless, that I drive myself crazy looking for answers. That I know less today, my third day on my second thru-hike of the PCT, than I ever have.
This cistern is warm from soaking up the sun all day. The light is dissapearing, the wind is picking up but I hope not too much. Tonight, at last, I sleep? I’ve been fantasizing about a neo-air, one of the short ones. A real sleeping pad. No more freezing nights.
Bring on the milky way!