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Longstride: Trail Journals

Hiking and Backpacking Trail Journals by John “Longstride” Bafford

A feed by John “Longstride” Bafford

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Day 119: Having a Town and Mountain With the Same Name is not Confusing at All

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-18 04:58, modified at 16:23

I again woke up at 5 am, wanting to get to the road and into town as early in the day as possible. The mosquitoes this morning were pretty awful, which fueled moving as quickly as possible, and I was ready to leave by 5:45.

read more (761 words, 3 photos)


Day 118: Melting in the Heat

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-17 02:32, modified on 2018-07-18 15:22

At risk of sounding like a broken record, it was warm overnight, and possibly the warmest day of my hike yet. I couldn’t see any clouds when I left camp shortly after around 6:15, so the prospects of shade from the sky today seemed limited.

read more (746 words, 2 photos)


Day 117: “That privy has a distinctive odor.”

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-15 23:48, modified on 2018-07-18 04:52

I woke up immediately before my 5 am alarm, mostly because I stretched and hit my water bottle, which then fell on me. Though what really got me moving was the flashes of lightning coming through my tent. The last thing I wanted was to put away a wet tent, and though it wasn’t raining yet, the lightning could have been a herald of rain.

read more (684 words, 6 photos)


Day 116: I Do Not Like This Heat Wave One Bit

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-15 02:27, modified on 2018-07-18 04:01

I had my alarm set for 5 am, but didn’t get out of my sleeping bag until 5:30. It was again pretty warm overnight, and I was sure it was going to be another hot day today.

read more (531 words, 4 photos)


Day 115: Burney Falls, Even When The Creek Is Dry

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-14 00:23, modified on 2018-07-17 18:46

Quoi and I said our goodbyes today — well, more like “until next we meet” — since I’m hiking on, and she needs to stay put to help her foot heal. She’ll have to catch up with me at some point: the date she needs to leave the country remains unchanged, which means her finish date is unchanged. She’ll just have fewer days to complete the trail, which means more miles each day, a prospect she is not much relishing.

read more (854 words, 3 photos)


Day 114: Pool Day at Burney Mountain Guest Ranch

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-13 04:28, modified on 2018-07-17 12:18

I wasn’t really expecting to zero at the Burney Mountain Guest Ranch, but, that’s what I did.

read more (225 words)


Day 113: Don’t Get Eaten by a Mountain Lion

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-12 01:10, modified on 2018-07-17 03:46

I was up late last night trying to do some catchup on blog posts, interspersed with some video editing, and wound up not going to sleep until after 11 pm. This meant I pretty much ignored my 6 am alarm, and got up at 7 instead. It was already warm out, which was good for getting out of my tent quickly, but bad for hiking today.

read more (821 words, 3 photos)


Day 112: Second Dessert Is Awesome. Second Desert Not So Much.

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-11 06:01, modified on 2018-07-17 02:37

Quoi and I got up shortly after 6. Her foot was still hurting, but she was determined to hike today. Afterburners gave us a ride back to JJ’s Cafe on her way to work, and we got breakfast there — I got four of the largest pancakes I’ve ever gotten, and they were delicious.

read more (826 words, 3 photos)


Day 111: Yes, I Would Like to Stay in the Treehouse

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-10 06:17, modified on 2018-07-17 01:06

In theory, Quoi and I were supposed to get up at 5:30 to start hiking at 6:30, but yesterday’s hike tired us out more than we expected. Quoi was still asleep, and I was still in my sleeping bag, at 6:30. We didn’t actually start hiking until almost 8:30.

read more (761 words, 2 photos)


Day 110: Finally, Something On The Trail Smells Worse Than Me

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-09 04:55, modified on 2018-07-13 03:41

My alarm went off at 3:30 as expected, and I managed to get up before the snooze timer rang the alarm again. It helped that it was fairly warm overnight. As a result, I was actually ready ahead of time, and we got started at 4:20, ten minutes early.

read more (1213 words, 7 photos)


Day 109: Melting at the Trailhead

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-08 00:55, modified on 2018-07-13 02:15

We were up fairly late last night (by hiker standards), and so Quoi and I were not in any particular hurry to get moving this morning. (Also, Quoi had a headache she said was from sleeping funny.) As a result, we didn’t leave the motel until just after 10.

read more (723 words, 2 photos)


Day 108: Halfway to Canada

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-07 04:00, modified on 2018-07-12 23:35

It was warm overnight, and I was easily able to get hiking before 7 am. It was also overcast, and would remain so all day, so it was cooler than it might otherwise have been, but more importantly, there was very little direct sunlight.

read more (1153 words, 4 photos)


Day 107: Goodbye Sierra, Hello Cascades

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-06 02:09, modified on 2018-07-12 22:53

At least five trains rumbled through while we were sleeping, but fortunately, it didn’t interrupt our sleep too much. I did roll out of my sleeping bag a little later than I wanted, though, and we got started hiking from Belden at 4:20.

read more (760 words, 4 photos)


Day 106: Who Needs Fireworks When You Have The Trail’s Scenery?

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-05 04:45, modified on 2018-07-12 22:52

Our alarms were set for 5 am this morning, but even when they went off, we didn’t budge. It wasn’t until 6 am that we even started to get up.

read more (1094 words, 5 photos)


Day 105: An Unexpected Zero In Quincy

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-04 03:39, modified on 2018-07-12 22:52

Quoi and I intended to get back on the trail today, but it didn’t happen, and our feet thanked us very much for it.

read more (585 words)


Day 104: When The Trail Offers You A Teepee, Say Yes

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-03 06:15, modified on 2018-07-12 22:51

After our epic-length day yesterday, Quoi and I didn’t really want to get up early. But, with a big climb immediately after our campsite, we had to get going sooner, rather than later, before the sun got too high and made us miserable. Fortunately, it was warm overnight, and it didn’t take a lot of effort to get out of my sleeping bag and get moving.

read more (1188 words, 4 photos)


Day 103: The Longest Day

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-02 06:29, modified on 2018-07-12 22:49

With a 23 mile plan for today, the morning started off relatively ordinarially. It didn’t end that way.

read more (1196 words, 3 photos)


Day 102: Old Trails Still Need Love

Permalink - Posted on 2018-07-01 02:14, modified on 2018-07-12 22:49

After a nice night in a warm, comfy bed, Steven gave us a ride back to the trailhead (Thanks so much for your hospitality!), and Quoi and I started the eight-mile long climb up Sierra Butte at 7:30.

read more (656 words, 5 photos)


Day 101: I Like Big Cheeseburgers, And I Can Not Lie

Permalink - Posted on 2018-06-30 04:24, modified on 2018-07-12 22:48

With a one-pound cheeseburger calling our names in Sierra City, Quoi and I started hiking shortly after 6 am. With the day being almost all downhill, we expected to make pretty good time.

read more (740 words, 4 photos)


Day 100: In The Game Of Birds, There Are No Winners

Permalink - Posted on 2018-06-29 02:38, modified on 2018-07-12 22:48

Today is my 100th day on the trail. For the most part, it went well, and after yesterday’s detour to Truckee and resulting short day, Quoi and I returned to our newly-quickened pace, going a bit over 23 miles to a campsite more than halfway to the next town, Sierra City.

read more (1137 words, 6 photos)