Day 18

Miles: 256 to 266
We only had 10 miles to hike and so we slept in half an hour, rising at 5:30 am. The morning was cold and dump once again so we started hiking with our down jackets on and a hat and gloves, and we did not take them off until two miles later when we finally walked high enough for the morning sun to touch us.

The day felt warmer than yesterday even though the forecast suggested otherwise. Perhaps it was the lack of breeze that made the difference, either way the gentle but long uphill left us sweating.

In about 5 miles we caught our first glimpse of Big Bear Lake, it seemed so close, it was hard to believe that we still had another 5 miles to go but the trail with all its ups and downs over and around hillsides ensured we walked that distance.

We were the only hikers at Hwy 18 when we arrived to it, which we thought would make hitching easy. It wasn’t super easy, quite a few cars passed but 30 minutes later we got lucky and a trail angel who took two French ladies back on trail took us to town. 

He dropped us off at the post office at Big Bear City where our package with micro spikes awaited and from there we planned to take a bus to Big Bear Lake. We were at the bus stop for about 3 minutes when a red Jeep Compass stopped and a friendly female driver asked if we were PCT Hikers and if we needed ride anywhere.

On the way to Big Bear Lake which is about 15 minutes further we found out that Coleen attempted PCT but her knees could not handle it. So now she helps hikers whenever she can. Before we parted she gave us her phone number and told us to call her if we needed a ride back to the trail on Saturday. It was such a sweet gesture. People in these small Southern California communities never cease to amaze me. 

First things first, we took a shover right after we got in our room at Honey Bear Lodge, then we headed to get some food and the rest of the day was well about resting.

In the evening we went to visit with Amanda and Larry, two Canadian hikers we met just after the descend from Fuller Ridge and we really clicked with. We spend the evening eating pizza and chatting about our trail experiences. It was a really good evening and we hope to see them soon again.

They hike the trail for a very special cause. Please take a moment to check it out.