State Campground in Idyllwild to Fuller Ridge TH campground (179.4 to 190.5 + 11 miles alternates – 4.5 PCT miles)
Daily miles: 17.6
Wake up early and walk the deserted streets. Change your name/forget your face. Roam the hillsides and head to the mountain. Pass the people walking slow and don’t stop. Go up 1, 2, 3, 6 thousand feet in a single day. Stare at nothing, stare at the ground, stare at the mountain whose name is San Jacinto. Talk to old men with glasses and white beards. Wrestle with the needy collection of cells that make up a body and tell them, “Shhhh…”
Walk over 20 miles and breathe the smog coming off the coast. Try to remember a name and a face, then another and another and another. Feel hunger that actually inspires awe. See young men and women who don’t feel pain and laugh when things go wrong. Sit at night with the wind and cold, and remain.
Relent. Tell the cells, “OK, now.” Eat like an animal and feel the energy flow into the body, the body which both belongs and does not belong. Sleep at night next to boulders and rest.
Tomorrow I descend to the desert floor again and go to the house of Ziggy and The Bear.