I’m on a zero day in Big Bear Lake at the moment – thought I would write about the last couple of days. I had a fall on snow/ice on Fuller Ridge, no serious injury, I had microspikes but wasn’t wearing them and shouldn’t have carried them, you’d have to put them on and take them off 50 times. There were a couple younger hikers who found humor in the fact that I brought them in the first place hehe. I broke my Black Diamond trekking pole trying to stop the slide.. but my fantastic wife has a new one arriving at my hotel tomorrow! All of Mount San Jacinto was just beautiful, the climb up was strenuous, the long down grade was pretty brutal and never-ending. To top it off I was feeling great, maybe over confident, and I went a bit faster than I should have – felt like a kid again… but I face-planted like a kid too LOL – later I took a second tumble that would really have made you laugh but thankfully no one was there to see it.
We did come across two rattlers about 20 minutes apart, about 1 to 2 miles from the water faucet on the descent. In these areas I hike with my earphones in usually and I wouldn’t hear a snake rattle if there was one. From the water faucet to ZiggyBears was brutal, desert, sandy like walking on a beach, with crazy winds pushing you back – by this time I was beat and fell behind others, finally getting in. ZiggyBears didn’t appear to have food, or showers, and with storms maybe coming I didn’t feel like throwing my bag out on the uncovered patio area – and there were perhaps 20-25 other hikers there with more expected later – so a couple of us got a hotel in Banning, CA and ate steaks and buffet at Sizzler. Since the ‘shuttle’ was no longer providing rides from Ziggybears to Big Bear (instead was giving rides to a bus station), we opted to use Uber and about 77 miles later made it to Motel 6 in Big Bear. It is snowing now here, and sticking I think. The downgrade of Mount San Jacinto resulted in quite a few blisters, a couple big ones, and new muscle pains, so I will zero here one or two days. Finally I am now feeling stronger, I no longer really fret about that big uphill grade I see coming up, ‘another 6 miles’ doesn’t sound that bad any more, and I’ve learned about how much electrolytes I require. I had originally said that if I could make it 2 weeks I could make it 26 weeks, though it was hard to see in those first difficult days, and it turned out to be more like 3-4 weeks, I am now much more confident of my abilities 🙂 I guess it took a doc telling me to go home… the easiest way to get me to do something is to tell me I can’t do it (or shouldn’t hahaha). Take care all, be safe… Morgan