I wake in the morning, have some coffee, and start my hike. After a few miles, I encounter Tailor. I’ve been leapfrogging him since Cajon Pass (at least).
He’s an engineer from Germany and stereotypically super-exacting about his gear, diet, hiking style, and clothing. The tolerances are very narrow. As a counter balance to this, he is also an alternative health care practitioner and well-versed in contemporary psychology. Our conversations bounce back and forth between these two extremes.
We meet again some miles later and sit on a broad rocky expanse that water flows down; a perfect lunch spot. In fact, the whole day is marked by beautiful creeks flashing over rocks dappled by sunlight. I want to return as a day hiker - nothing to do but hang out and look. I have miles to hike, though, and have to pass by this idyll.
After 17.5 miles, I'm at the approach of a pass, but its dusk so I decide to find a camp spot and make dinner.