Mile: 508 to 530
up/down: 1150/2950 feet
A day with two halves. In the morning we walked the ridge down from our camp to the west end of the Antelope Valley, far west of the city of Lancaster. At the bottom of the hill we stopped by a trail angel house called Hikertown. There we got water and rested in the shade for half an hour before departing on a trial of the PCT - the aqueduct walk. Depending on the weather this can be one of the hardest pieces of trail on the entire trail. It's flat, boring, and relentless. And while you walk for miles next to a pipe with acre-feet of water, you carry your own for 15 miles of it. It turned out to be a reasonable afternoon for us as we trudged along, only mid-80s and breezy. It could have been much worse. There are times during the season when hikers will night hike this to avoid the blistering Mojave Desert heat. Not today and not us.
Hikertown complete with its false front buildings.
We walked along the open California aqueduct for a mile
Then walked the LA aqueduct pipe for many miles
After a third consecutive 20+ mile day we pulled up about 5 miles short of the next guaranteed water for the evening. We're camped well off the dirt road, out of sight in a dry wash. And we hauled 9 liters with us for the last 9 miles so we have plenty for the evening and morning. The habitat here is similar to home so it's kind of like camping in our backyard.
We left Los Angeles county this afternoon and entered Kern. Susan ended LA with four new species. There is virtually no chance she will get a new Kern bird on our home turf, she already has over 400.
In case you may be wondering what my poor feet look like after days with no water for such foolishness as bathing...
As I sit here typing this we added a new trip bird - there are at least three Lesser Nighthawks singing their trill song within 100 yards of camp. Pretty cool.