Butterflies and Hangovers

Day 43

Mileage: 43.2

Total distance: 1248.5
I woke up at 3 am off my pad and halfway out of my sleeping bag about to explode with pee. I felt extremely nauseous and my head was pounding as I stumbled around the campsite to find a cup for some water. I tried to be as quiet as possible and finally made my way back to my pad and laid for thirty minutes to catch another hour of sleep before a huge day. I ended up waking up at five am with mosquitos buzzing all around me and biting anything I left exposed. I debated on crawling in a hammock close by and sleeping for another two hours, but my desire to get back on schedule got the best of me and I miserably stood up to get ready to leave. 


When I get really dehydrated my eyes have a hard time adjusting in the morning and a flickering happens when my eyes shift around. It’s interesting at first then becomes worrisome. I chugged a liter of water and signed the hiker notebook and left the rv camps lot where some of the most amazing people were scattered about sleeping in their tents. 



Getting moving was a challenge. I felt horrible and was exhausted and my legs were not in function mode. I stumbled over a few sticks and once tripped and scrapped my hand and all up the back of my calf. Ridiculous. I took a few deep breaths and refocused myself and slowly got up to pace. 


The first ten miles were gorgeous with beautiful views of the Sierra buttes and other jagged rock structures surrounding the mountain. Lakes and ponds laid low in some valleys and pines dominated the landscape. It was all so beautiful, but I felt foggy and so tired. 


I ended up putting on some music and took my sunglasses off when I dropped below the canopy and things started feeling better. Butterflies were fluttering all over the place along with dragonflies and moths of all sorts. I felt the fog lifting and joy spread throughout my body. This may have been caused by the vitamin b in my water as well. 


I hit a wall around two at a little pond called duck soup pond that gave me a deep nostalgia for Louisiana and I ate a ton of food in hopes to regain some energy. I had no idea how far I wanted to get, only that it needed to be a big day. 


Most of the elevation was short ups and downs in the rolling hills of the northern sierras under the shade of pine trees. There wasn’t much water and that forced me to hike even faster to get down to a river crossing where I could refill and hydrate, which was the game of the day. 
Eventually I made my way to the river and stood on the bridge watching the rapids below me dominate the rocks and spiral in a million directions that never seemed to have a pattern to it. I debated on sleeping on a rock by the river, but still had energy to do one last two mile climb up to a campsite. 

Honestly, if there was more light outside I’d probably still be moving. Maybe it was the hour long massage I received yesterday or the low grade in elevation gain. Who knows why today seemed so relaxing, but I am thankful for it and deeply enjoyed feeling strong and stable all day long even with short breaks and a horrible hangover. I am camped alone by a dirt road and have 36 miles to Belden tomorrow where I hope to see an old friend and sleep in a bed at a trail Angels house. I have a feeling that the second I lay my head down my body is going to turn off until the orange glow of the sun taps on my tent and calls me out for another day in the dense pine forest of Northern California. 


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