Once we made it to Twain Harte we rested for a day and collected all of the last minute items we’d need for our hike over the Sierras which we expect to take five days. Since towns are few and far between we knew we’d need food and supplies for those days. We ran around town (and Rebecca drove Tim around to show him where she went to school and all of her old Twain Harte life) to grab the necessary items. We made sure to get a walk in to keep our bodies ready for the rest of the walk.
The next day we headed off to Murphys, only 18 miles of walking, but we had a friend to stay with, so we knew it would be a good day. Rebecca’s mom’s friend Ron and his son Shawn were driving out to Murphys as well, so we’d get a temporary reprieve from carrying our packs. We got a bit of a late start because Rebecca had a stomach ache the night before and hadn’t packed, but by 7am Rebecca’s mom had dropped us off in front of Sonora Used Books and we said our goodbyes for our first (short) day with the packs.
We hadn’t made it to Columbia yet when Carl (one of Rebecca’s mom’s co-workers) pulled over on the side of the road and stopped us to see how we’re doing and tell us we’re crazy. We know, and we’re happy about it. But he definitely told us in an excited way and encouraged us to keep on going! Every time someone stops us to ask about our journey or gives us a thumbs up it boosts our morale and reminds us that this is a crazy and fun adventure. We stopped in Columbia Historic Park to use their (very nice) bathrooms and talked to one of the workers there who was also excited for our journey.
Barely out of Columbia Ron and Shawn stopped by to grab our packs for two hours of pack-free walking. We only saved our water bottles and leftover pizza from the night before to sustain ourselves for the six miles we planned to do without them. Parrot’s Ferry road is gorgeous as it winds in and out of the valley on the way down to the bridge. There’s a bunch of old timey things along the way.
The bridge had a pedestrian access on one side so we were able to walk safely across instead of hug the tight shoulder, always a blessing, though apparently rare!
But the bridge is pretty gorgeous from above too!
We were fully taking advantage of the pack-free lifestyle though we knew it would be only a few hours, luckily, we weren’t tired of the packs yet!
Every time we see a sign with Valparaiso on it we make sure to grab a picture with Tim in it (he went to the university there, in Indiana).
We made it to Murphys early and were able to send off some post cards and write a blog post. We’re not very good at posting, it’s amazing how little free time we have even though we’re just walking. We always think we’ll have time but people, bear bags, tents, and hot tubs have gotten in the way every time. The next day we planned to make it to Railroad Flat, our first full day (26 miles) with full packs!
Today we walked through:
Rebecca: 45,728 steps
Tim: 42,928 steps
198 miles finished