With the knowledge that the heat would be coming on strong today, we were up about 5:30 AM. That isnt the earliest..most people who are trying to beat the sun start earlier, but still very early for us, who love to sleep in as late as possible. As it turns out, it was a very hazy day much to our delight. This kept the temperature down maybe 10 or 15° lower than normal and we already knew we only had 12 miles this morning. This made us not feel nearly as pressed to make time and miles which becomes a much more enjoyable hike. The first target of the day was a 6200 ft ridge that hopefully contained a water cache maintained by a family who had a farm not too far away. It was fully stocked so we drank a liter, took a liter to add to the 2 we were already carrying and set off down the hill. For me, I have daydreams of Dali’s Don Quixote paintings when we head into windmills.
Hiking underneath huge churning windmill blades is a bit surreal. This farm’s were the biggest I’ve ever seen and even more impressive to be right underneath them. The Joshua Trees today along the trail in the wind farm were the largest and oldest we have seen. We saw our first Horny Lizard today too. So prehistoric looking. When we came to the road, we were met by 2 Trail Angels. Stogie had Gatorade for us and Surveyor Dave was ready to take us into town. He dropped us off at a BBQ place for a big fat lunch and then offered us a shower and quiet place to camp in his backyard. After coming back into the fray of many more hikers than we had experienced before, we decided to take him up on it. He and his wife Dale were so very welcoming, genuine and helpful to us the entire time we have been here. They are about to drop us back on the trail after a good nights sleep. So far, in 39 trail days, we have hiked up 103,000 and down 100,000 feet of elevation in 558 miles. In the coming days, we climb up and down 27,000 feet just getting to the Sierra Mountains. Time to tie the shoelaces tight.
The hike into Tehachapi was really nice this morning. I was shocked to see 2 people from town waiting at the trailhead to take hikers into town. We heard that this a very hiker friendly town and experienced it right from the start. We grabbed a ride from Dave (who we later learned has a trail name of Butterscotch) and instantly felt his good vibes and energy. Before dropping us off at the BBQ place for lunch he was kind enough to take a detour by his house and show us his shady backyard where we could rest this afternoon. So much shade! After we ate we were both exhausted and really wanted to lay down. Thankfully we had the good fortune of running into Dave earlier. We layed our sleeping bags down in the backyard and passed out almost immediately. He and his wife, Dale, offered us a shower, laundry, ride to the grocery store and to pitch our tent for the night. All of which we took them up on. We really enjoyed the time we got to spend getting to know them both. I had been feeling a little low from the changes we were seeing on trail and the time we spent with them really lifted my spirits. It turned me right back around. I am forever grateful 💜