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Day 13: CS259 to Big Bear (6.7 miles)

Updated: Aug 22, 2019

May 20, 2016 - Woke up to a nice sunrise, first good one I’ve seen since I started. Kind of surprising since I have witness a lot of great sunsets.


I packed up everything and got going quick because I knew that the hostel drives out to drop off/pick up hikers at 8am from highway 18. Those 6 miles were very easy and was hiking at a good pace and got to the road at 7:30am. I saw several large joshua trees along the way so that was a nice change as I had never seen any before. Since I got there early I decided to change out of my dirty hiking clothes and into my cleaner sleeping clothes.


Just before 8am a car pulls right up and see 4 hikers get out. I assumed it’s the shuttle to the hostel. I go over to make sure. Turns out it is a trail angel who opens his home to hikers and was dropping them off. The hikers tell me the hostel is closed today and tomorrow. So the trail angel, Papa Smurf, offers me a ride to anywhere I would like to go but just end up going back to his place.


I decided that this was the place for me to stay the night and possible a zero day tomorrow. I was hoping to stay at the hostel since it’s right on the lake and close to everything in town but Papa Smurf’s house has it own charm, it’s definitely a hiker house.


As soon as we arrive he offers me breakfast, shows me where I can take a shower and do laundry. Then soon after he is off to drop off more hikers back on trail.


There were still several hikers left so I spend the morning chatting with them and sharing stories. They leave and more come in to replace. I basically just hang out at the house all day just relaxing. Later in the day I head into town to resupply on food. Soon after that Papa Smurf heads to work and his wife comes home and orders pizza for use hikers. Then finally around 8pm everyone starts settling for bed, scattered all over the place with 2 in the back room bunkhouse, 2 in the trailer, 2 cowboy camping outside and 5 in the living room with me.


I had planned on a zero day tomorrow, no miles hiked, but originally I had planned to get to Big Bear late in the day so today was basically a zero day so I’ll be heading back out in the morning. Hopefully it won’t be as cold tomorrow night because it’s suppose to get down to 27 tonight.


Papa Smurf giving me a ride into Big Bear

Papa Smurf's house


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