Mile 1693 to 1715
We wake to the awesome sound of our running spring and load up on way too much water. It’s just that it is so clear, so cold and so fast we can’t help ourselves. As we begin our hike we are serenaded by howling coyotes who clearly have made a major kill, or are as tired of looking at Mount Shasta as we are.
At the top of a hot climb we find more trail magic, two coolers of sodas. I pilfer a Pepsi, while Kevin snags a Sprite. We raise our cans in toast to our unknown patron. The timing of the magic is great, because Kevin’s arches are in agony. Kevin appears to be quite the magic charm as my percentage of magic to miles has improved dramatically.
The trail camping options coming up are not good. I read to Kevin about an all you can eat spaghetti dinner at Callahan’s. It becomes our new reason to live and our excuse to press on through his pain and the required 22 miles. I am desperate to try Grandma Callahan’s family meat sauce recipe. Kevin seems just as excited for the Caesar salad and bread.
Callahan’s is a strange place. It is an odd juxtaposition of a high end mountain resort for folks coming off Interstate 5 and a friendly oasis for thru-hikers coming off the PCT. The a la carte services for thru-hikers seem appropriate, until you look at the price. $20 for a shower? We opt for the $16 all you can eat dinner and the $10 sleep on the back lawn. The restaurant terrace overlooks the lawn, making us the equivalent of a thru-hiker zoo. People are sipping wine, staring over the railing, probably saying to their children “look at the thru-hikers in their native environment.” I am tempted to defecate in my hand and throw it at them, but I refrain.
Loran arrives and sets up his tent in the lawn. The mosquitoes are mild, so Kevin and I just cowboy camp. At 10pm, they turn off the spotlights on the lawn. Apparently the zoo is now closed.