I got back down to Highway 2 this morning, to find a ranger there telling hikers to jump on the endangered species detour early. A few miles of trail is closed long term to protect the Mountain Yellow-Legged Frog. The new official detour is twenty miles long and goes on unmaintained trails. I chose to follow the old detour which is much shorter, although it has some road walking. The ranger was just telling us to start the road walking a bit early, from Islip Saddle instead of Eagles Roost.

I had been told in town that the shoulder on the road was nonexistant, but that wasn’t the case. I had plenty of room to walk and move over if vehicles appeared, although there were only a handful that went by, it being a weekday morning.

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I walked the road to Buckhorn Campground, got some water and cooked a dinner for second breakfast since I was starving (I think hiker hunger has set in), and then hopped on the Burkhart Trail to get back on the PCT at Cooper Canyon. I could have continued walking the road and gotten back on the trail where it crossed the road again at Cloudburst Summit, but Cooper Canyon was very pretty so I’m glad I didn’t miss it.

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I stopped where some hikers were setting up camp to chat and decided to cook dinner there before continuing. DebD was full before finishing his dinner so I ate the rest of it, and then a truck showed up on the dirt road. Two former hikers had trail magic of fruit and candy. I didn’t need to cook dinner just yet after all.

I did 22.7 miles to the Sulphur Springs Campground, set up camp, and ate another dinner. I am having a hard time feeling full these days. A hiker I ran into a couple of days ago that I’d only met once my first week out told me that I looked like I’d lost weight already. I hope that is not the case, but I am going to try to eat more regardless.

Written by Siren

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