If you read my journal you’d know this section was a bit of a mixed bag for me. I loved it so much and I also reached probably my largest level of frustration ever here as well (over nothing in particular). The Angeles National Forest was great. The hike back down to the desert along the Poodle Dog Bush alternate was awesome (seriously, if you do it you won’t regret it). Getting down to the Acton KOA pissed me off to be honest, for some reason I had it in my head that in order to resupply I absolutely had to be in civilization, I couldn’t just camp near Agua Dulce then hike in and resupply that way. The KOA was full because of a holiday, and there were apparently 50+ hikers at the local trail angel’s house which didn’t sound appealing to me at all. The heat was starting to really pick up at this point and didn’t always leave me making rational decisions or having me feel 100% all the time, the result was me not taking enough water out of the KOA in order to camp near town because I was so stressed out, I practically ran out of that place it was so busy. It’s funny to look back and think that upset me after deciding to live outside for the summer: Just sleep outside dude! Getting to Vasquez Rocks solved everything and chilled me out a lot with all its cool rocks and stuff, it was definitely a highlight of the trail. I get all giddy whenever I see it on tv/in movies now and then I realize I’m not there anymore, turn off the TV, and hide under my blankets and have a brief little freakout. Hooray post-trail blues!
In the end I had to hop off trail at Agua Dulce because my dad managed to break his back a little bit and was stuck in his hotel room in Victorville (fun story about that: the paramedics couldn’t legally help him for some bullshit reason and had to leave him there), marking the end of his Trail Angel escapades.
I met and hiked with my good trail friend Exo here who eventually had to get off trail because his feet were in really bad shape, as in “Dude watch me pull out my toe nails!” bad. As I hiked on without him I kept hearing legends of him on trail for that (make sure you pick good shoes if you plan on thru-hiking, I didn’t get the impression he was having a good time). We’d run into each other again later on at Kennedy Meadows. Which by the way is getting close, but the desert has a final and fun little sendoff waiting (Spoiler alert: You’re going to hear me say “it’s hot” a few more times).