Thursday, July 17, 2014

Day 97 - Crystal Lake Fish Hatchery to Burney

What an awful night. The worst on the trail so far. My tent's netting zipper failed on me again, and I couldn't get it closed during the night. And there were plenty of mosquitoes at the fish hatchery. The night was also very warm, so I slept only in my silk liner through most of it. Which probably helped the mosquitoes to bite me. I awoke many times during the night, and on several occasions turned on my headlamp and hunted at least 5 mosquitoes inside my tent, every time. When the morning came, I welcomed it.
The day's hike was rather easy, with only 11 miles for me to do, until I reach highway 89, and hitch into town. I passed Thru Fisher, and later Zen Dawg, just before the first highway crossing. I wanted to stop for a quick breakfast, but discovered i am almost at the first road crossing, so i decided to push to there instead.
When I got to the road, I saw a note about a water cache 1 mile ahead. I pushed a bit more, and I got to the best cache/trail magic I've encountered so far. There were tons of sodas, a lot of water, a cupboard full of hiking food, a shaded picnic table, and even a field shower. It was awesome.
I met Roi and Sara there, as well as Alan, Bomber and Siesta. There was a digital camera there, meant for hikers to take photos of themselves. That's a nice idea. I had a can of sprite, and rested a bit, and then headed out with Roi and Sara to finish my day.
The remaining 6 miles were also mostly flat and easy. There was a bit of much needed rain, but it stopped quickly enough. I finally got to highway 89 a bit after 10:00, just as I caught up to Beer. He continued to the state park, 1 mile further.
I met Big Boots on the road, trying to hitch into town. I tried helping, but the cars just kept on zooming by. Finally, a lady came back from the forest after her trail run, and to us both into Burney.
She dropped us at the Shasta Pines motel, where she stayed, and Big Boots hurried to the library. He has some business he needs to get done in the east coast, and he needed a computer, printer and scanner for it. I went over to the McDonald's, to meet Idan and Zen Dawg, who came into town earlier.
After some fries and a shake, we went next door to our motel (the Charm Motel). Our room wasn't ready yet, so we left our packs, and got to Safeway's to buy resupply.
After getting back, we got into our room. We got the disabled accessible room, which turned out great. It was much bigger than usual, with plenty of space for 4 hikers' gear. The shower was also very comfortable.
After I showered, I went over to the post office, to get the zipper sliders I got from TarpTent. It was time to replace the sliders on my tent, so that last night doesn't happen again. I went west for almost a mile, where I noticed there was a seamstress shop I just walked by. I entered, and asked if she can help me with fixing my tent. I told her I have the replacement zipper sliders, and I just need some stoppers, which would be much easier to install than sewing the zippers. She was very helpful, and have me the stoppers for free. She also told me the post office is on the other side of town. Bummer. But at least I got the stoppers.
I walked all the way back to the other side of town, and got the zippers from by bounce box. Back at the room, our laundry was done, so Idan and I went to find some lunch.
The alpine burger place had nothing vegetarian on the menu, so we went further, to the Mexican place. They didn't have anything on the menu as well, but we got them to make a veggie burrito for us, which was very nice.
At the room, I replaced the zippers on the tent finally. It was rather easy. I hope they will last for the rest of the trip.
For dinner, Zen Dawg and I just bought some microwave dinners from the store, while Idan and Big Boots got meat, and did an Israeli style grill at the motel. It was very impressive.
Many other hikers were staying at the same motel as well, including Hop Scotch, Leo, Nina, Double Tap, Fire Starter and Gas Pedal, and Banana Boat and Trail Candy. Some would be zeroing here tomorrow.