Since we started planning our thru-hike of the PCT, we knew we wanted to enjoy some time in Big Bear at our family's cabin. Needless to say, we have been using it as something to look forward to on a couple of the difficult days we have had so far.
After a quick drive down to SD to grab our dogs (Tuesday afternoon), we arrived at the cabin Wednesday morning ready for a little R&R!
One of our favorite places in the whole world is the deck of the cabin. I could sit on the deck all day enjoying the view.
Even when it's stormy, the birds hunker down to enjoy the view.
We got in touch with our new friend and thru-hiker, Carl. (We spent time with Carl and his girlfriend Krista in Idyllwild). He happened to be in town so we picked him up and then loaded up with supplies (snacks and adult beverages...somehow I think we ended up with more of the latter).
Carl's girlfriend Krista decided to come up the mountain and stay the night at the cabin too!
And we got the pizza we had been dreaming of!
We woke up the next morning and all decided to go out to breakfast at our favorite spot in Fawnskin, The North Shore Cafe.
After breakfast we enjoyed playtime in the Fawnskin Park.
Krista fit in the Fire Truck.
Carl's head fit in the Flight Helmet.
We enjoyed "The World's Largest Tire"
And took direction from the park's exhibits to a slightly different meaning...
We were sad to hear that Carl was planning on getting off the trail for awhile but we are hoping to meet up with him and Krista during the summer to hike a section or two of the trail. They are really great people. We said our goodbyes Thursday morning and they headed on their way.
Izzy watching the birds.
On Friday we got in touch with our other friend and fellow thru-hiker Neil (Wolf-E). We picked him up in town and then enjoyed lunch at the North Shore Cafe.
The North Shore Cafe in Fawnskin is the best! Their breakfasts are to die for and the burgers we had would give the Jose burger a run for its money! The portions are huge as well. Normal appetites would be happy with a half order, but anyone afflicted with the hiker hunger would appreciate the gigantic portions.
My parents even decided to head up the mountain and hang out for a few days.
Neil hung out for a few days as well. We had the worse time trying to pick up his packages from the Big Bear Hostel. We went there 5 separate times over 2 days. If there was anyone there at all, they never could seem to find the key to the package closet. We took Neil back again during the check-in time (twice) and couldn't find anyone to check him in. Neil never was able to get his packages or check in! He ended up staying with us another night at the cabin. We were sad to see Wolf-E leave as well, he is a really great and interesting guy. We hope to get to spend more time with him on the trail. Below you can see Neil taking pictures of our maps with his camera because his maps were being held hostage at the hostel!
The pirates of Big Bear Lake even sailed by to say "Hello".
We spent a lot of time with our dogs Izzy and Penny at the lake. Sadly, we will not be able to see my parents or our dogs for awhile now that we will be getting farther north on the trail. :(
Needless to say they were pooped pups from all the swimming.
On another note, I was tailgating Tailgate in town and ended up ripping my poor toenail almost completely off when I stubbed it on the back of his shoe.
Along with patching my toe up, we took care of a few gear issues as well. Tailgate got his new head lamp in the mail after his other one mysteriously stopped working. Good old REI replaced it no hassle. I had to call Columbia regarding my hiking shirt. I had purchased two Columbia shirts and the material on my back ended up wearing and bunching so bad I couldn't wear them.
Columbia agreed to send me two new shirts (different fabric). Hopefully I won't have the same problem with these.
I know that many went down to kick off this weekend. I am hoping to hear some great KO stories down the trail. We decided not to go this year. However, we are definitely hoping to go next year to reunite with some of the 2012 class and help out.
Our stay in Big Bear was wonderful. We are not planning on taking another zero day for awhile so we tried to enjoy every minute. You can't beat good times with family, friends and great food.
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