This morning is 10°C (50°F). It is overcast. First hiker run today is at 8:30 AM.
I drove four out this morning. Two from Germany. I really need to learn German soon.
Yesterday was 86 hikers, today half that. They are slowing down or at least this bubble.
Today and yesterday felt like international days in the car – hikers from Germany, Israel, and France.
It is nice to be reminded that I am a human living on a planet with humans that live all over.
It has been a busy month for hiker season. I have been mulling over the ideas for the hiker depot that will be called Wits’ End.
Howards End is a novel written by E.M. Forster in 1910. For years David and I have referred to our place as Wits’ End. Now with the planning of the hiker depot, we have decided to name is Wits’ End.
It will be a fluid project in terms of ideas and planning for now. I have spoken at length with Rachel about it. She is another trail angel who has a wonderful vision and outlook on life. I always appreciate her input and guidance.
This week I have tried to discuss it with every hiker I encounter. I bring up ideas and ask their input. After years of doing this, I think I have a decent idea of how to start it initially.
First thing to offer is a mail drop. That involves having the address published in resources the hikers use, staffing the Wits’ End for the hikers to pick up packages. That will involve some planning and organizing. The goal is to be ready by next season.
Second thing is to get wi-fi setup. That involves getting services restored to the structure. I am already working on getting that accomplished. That can be done after the first step without needing to worry about deadlines too much. Meeting the deadlines to get published is going to take some planning.
After those things, there is a list of other items to work on that will take shape as things move forward.
- coordinated angel/hiker transportation
- lockers to store backpacks while waiting for motel rooms/angel hosting
- meals prepared in yard
- an active trail angel list for angels in Tehachapi
- outdoor movies on weekends
- hosting hikers from prior years to return to offer trail angel services
- laundry and shower services
- a map of surrounding services and establishments for hikers to enjoy
As time moves forward things should shape up better!
Garfield left this week. He was old. We knew he was coming to the end of his life. Yet, when he walked away on Tuesday it still hurt. It still hurts days later.
I posted about it on FB. He was over 20 years old. As a cat he had a good life. The last few months I did everything I could to make him feel safe and happy. I helped him throughout the day get on top of the dryer to his food dish. He was getting thin.
As usual, David’s alarm clock wakes me this morning. Maddie, Rupert, and Garfield begin their parade of hunger into the kitchen in front of David. I start to drift back to sleep. At times the silence is interupted by either Maddie or Rupert barking and wanting to be fed before the other one. This morning I heard Maddie cry and yelp in the backyard. I jumped out of bed. There was something in the backyard that spooked her. She wasn’t hurt or harmed and stood on the back porch barking into the cool night air with her tail wagging. It may have been a racoon.
I grab the flashlight and walk into the backyard to check things out. Maddie follows and begins barking at the old shed in back. There are ferral cats in the neighborhood and we think there are some in the old shed. Soon it will be torn down and hauled off to the dump. In the meantime, we leave the door cracked for the cats to escape when they get frightened off by Maddie. The door is not cracked wide enough for Maddie or Rupert to enter. If that happened I imagine a dirtyloud messy fight.
Now I’m wide awake at 4:30 AM. I already am planning my nap later.
Today was only 134 miles. It was hot. I helped Medic, Dale, Bottlecap, El Steverino, and Tesla. I found out more about the teepees at Red House. it was mainly in-town re-supplies.
I went to find hikers to help out this morning. I didn’t find any at Willow Springs or Cameron Rd/Hwy 58. I came home and looked around a bit on the web. It looks like it should be any day now for the season of 2017 PCT Sobo thru hikers to start.
Pete that thru hiked last year wrote this article about trail angels for Outdoor Magazine.
In Defense of Trail Angels
I came across one hiker walking up to 58. He said there were others up ahead. One of the hikers is doing the PCT on horseback. I made sure to ask if they needed anything especially in terms of taking care of the horses. Another hiker was hanging out with them, catching a short rest before he headed on towards Kennedy Meadows.
On the way back into town I came upon two hikers (El Stevorino and BottleCaps) in front of the truck stop. I gave them a ride into town and a short tour before taking them to the airport campground. “Pancake” was there at the campground, so I gave him a ride to re-supply before heading home for lunch.
I did one more afternoon run, it is a hot sunny day and I wanted to try to make sure no one was out trying to hitch a ride into town. No one out in the hot afternoon so I will work some at home and then go out later at the end of the day.
Winter in Tehachapi is over for now. I worked outside last weekend with David. I forgot sunscreen and ended up with a slight sunburn. I’m looking forward to doing the PCT as a trail angel this month. I’ve seen a few hikers go through town already. I’ll dig out my log book and get started this week.
This morning was chilly here. To keep the worms safe we put them in the greenhouse last night. The temperature dropped to 40º in the greenhouse.
Today I decided to put the personal misters in the greenhouse to help raise the humidity as well as lower the temperature. This will be a good way to prepare the greenhouse for the winter.
In the summer they can be used to keep us cool outside in the backyard. In the winter they will help keep the greenhouse humid.
David installed a new fountain in the front yard.