Archive for July 25th, 2006

Destination: Dry Creek Gully on Hat Rim
Starting Location: Old Station
Today’s Miles: 13.40
Trip Miles: 1392.20
Old Station (1377.7, 4580) to Dry Creek Gully on Hat Rim (1391.1, 4810) ascent (1207) descent (938)

Physically I am a wreck but what a great day with 7 of the former stinking dozen.
We have decided we may want to stop joking about things that might happen. First it was the bridge is likely out & then it was. Second it was about flesh eating illnesses and it is. We have joked a whole bunch about “not dying” yet or “that didn’t kill us”, but we may start exhibiting some humility – not.
Rolling Thunder, Tadpole the hippo, Sunny, Swiss Miss, Pnag, Sugar Daddy & I are camped on pine needle beds on the infamous Hat Creek Rim. We are just into the trees as much of the rim was burned by an enormously hot fire years ago. From our perch we are watching a blazing orange sun silhouette behind the greatest mountain in California – Mt Shasta. We can see her with the characteristic clouds hanging on top. I just had to leave my pine needle bed because Sunny is offering Reese’s Pieces. The first ingredient is sugar followed by defatted peanuts & partially hydrogenated vegetable oil – yum yum.
Our hiking started at 2:00 as the best sister in the whole world, along with Cathy the great, drove us to the trail head. Now from what two doctors and a nurse have told me I am in a bit of a bad physical situation and lay people continue to mention people loosing limbs via amputation as a result of this type of infection. So Sheri & Cathy have rearranged their entire schedule and they are following us for a few days. Their first stop was about 5 miles up the trail at Subway Cave. In the two hours it took us to hike this section our trail nurses as we are calling them drove to Burney & bought 5 large pizzas, sodas and fruit drinks.
Then an hour later they met us at the Highway 44 overlook with leftovers and full water bottles for our Hat Creek Rim crossing. They wanted to follow us via a questionable dirt road and we had to say enough! So we agreed to meet in Cassel tomorrow for a late lunch/early dinner likely followed by more support in Burney Falls State Park – unbelievable and so very appreciated.
Avoid excess heat, avoid exposure to the sun, keep arm elevated, drink extra water, use warm moist compress through out the day, keep area clean, and take your antibiotic cocktail. Well, I am on Hat Creek Rim that is largely devoid of shade as the result of a fire, we are having record (100+) temperatures, there is a water alert in this section, I am filthy again, and elevating would require tying my arm above my pack. But hey I am taking the drugs & hopeful that western medicine pulls me out of this one. Oh yea a side effect of the cocktail is potential diarrhea. Let’s just say a cow has nothing on me and finding trees on the rim is a bit impossible. Thus I walked at the rear and dug shallow holes. Apparently there is a popular saying in Asia about western hikers that basically states “it is a brave man who farts in Asia”. I understand this. Perfectly. And think – 10 days of antibiotics.
A good nights sleep did me wonders last night & my friends are the absolute best for waiting for me. I really considered asking Sheri & Cathy to take me home yesterday. They knew that, so they basically eliminated the option by providing help while telling me to get well because going forward was my only option. Thank you. These little black bugs are attracted to the light & are driving me nuts so goodnight John boy.


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