Day 27 (May 4): Mile 315.7 – 328.1

The Joys of Silverwood Lake

Beginning Elevation = 3,500
Ending Elevation = 3,400
Weather: Sunny with a high of 75°F

Cowboy camp number two was about as successful as the first…I did not sleep great, but made it through the night in decent shape. I discovered a lump or seven in the ground beneath me as the night progressed, as well as a significant slant, but the ants kept at bay.

I changed things up dramatically from my usual routine! By that I mean, I stayed in camp and took my time making my oatmeal and packing up. A whole herd of hikers meandered down the trail past me while I was doing so. My intention for the change was to give my leg a bit more time to rest.

I got going at 8:15 and felt pretty good. The terrain was conducive, generally staying pretty level in elevation with only gradual up and down dips. The amazing yellow flowers continued. Also, I have a new snowy peak I’m chasing down. Calzone showed me an app on her phone that uses the mountain “skyline” to label them. We found out it’s Mount San Antonio. I won’t be going up it, but probably close by.

I was leap frogging a bit with Songbird, Calzone, Foxtail, and Three Bean during the morning. Here’s the mighty hikers (shown left to right) at our creek rest stop.

A couple hundred lizards, more flowers, and lots of butterflies followed!

Here’s looking back where came from, the hiking from last night and this morning. Essentially, was traversing low along these foothills, just back and forth in/out of numerous canyons.

Then, I turned a corner and saw a stone wall.

I did not have to go over it, under it, or through it. The “trail” turned 90 degrees to the right. Here’s some pics to show it isn’t always scenic mountains, sometimes we get into this type of stuff.

But then, the trail pops up over a hill and you see this!

This is Silverwood Lake. It kind of snuck up on me, I saw it on the map, but didn’t know we walked around it for a few miles. After going about 1.5 miles around, I stopped at this boat-up picnic area (where the pavilions are)…

I had a late lunch, soaked my feetsies, dunked my head, and skipped a few stones (more like a slab of thin concrete). I’m nationaly ranked in skipping as you can see…pretty sure I counted 17 skips.

Calzone joined for a bit, then we continued onward together. The lake became bigger as we popped up and saw a whole other section of it, it’s pretty huge.

Calzone had heard rumors (Guthook’s app) that folks were getting pizza delivered to the next picnic area at the end of the lake. We thought we’d investigate.

And just like that, a pavilion full of thru-hikers mowing on some pies. Most of them I had never seen before, so strange that there are so many of us and I keep seeing new folks. Lady Bling and her friend Snorax had extra and very kindly offered it to us. Plus, pop (I got called out for calling it that, soda to everyone else). This pic was me learning how to use the wide-angle selfie on my phone (Calzone, Lady Bling, Bill,and Songbird)

I was debating on staying to camp here for the night or continue further. In the end, I did opt to stay. I like the group I was around today and most of them were staying. And, I thought my leg could use the rest again. It hurt today, but was more of an annoyance rather than a hike stopper like the night before.

I ended up ordering some cinnamon puff ball things and enjoyed hanging around. I also got to call home and catch up with sister Kara and do some more scheming with the Master Trailsman.

Apparently, we’re not technically supposed to camp in this area, but the talk was as long as were being respectful and also somewhat hidden in the back, it’s an ok thing to do. I set up my tent a ways from other folks hoping to get an early start tomorrow. Unfortunately, as I write this, I’m realizing I set up within the glare of the bathroom lights and I hear critters about out there. I shall persevere.

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