We were unsuccessful hitching into the Dinsmore's Hiker Haven after our first 27 mile day and had to get creative with a truck bed sleeping arrangement. I was too tired, cold and cranky to eat that night, and had the worst night of sleep, worrying about sweet nothings. Hitching in the morning was surprisingly difficult, too. I managed to score two cold beers, a few smokes (gross), and some peanut butter Oreos before our new friend Mike offered a ride. He dropped us off at the Der Baring Store, where none other than the Dinsmore's were munching away on their Sunday breakfast. After a warm hello and smile of relief, the first thing out of my mouth was "is there anyway I can get a Bloody Mary in here?" Meanwhile, my legs were so gashed, scraped and cut up from falling on average 5 times a day, it sure looked like I could use one (or that someone had poured the red drink all over me). Right then and there, the Dinsmore's gave me my trail name. Here on out, I shall be called Bloody Mary, a name I love and take pride in.
It's incredibly difficult to understand what exactly a "trail angel" is until you get to experience it first hand. I'm deeply moved, reflecting on the generosity and love I experienced from the Dinsmore's. I feel honored to be a part of the PCT community that they've supported over the years. A lifetime of gratitude sent your way, Andrea and Jerry!
What is the Hiker Haven exactly? Well, there are warm beds for hikers, plenty of grass to set up camp if you prefer, a private laundry room with loner clothes right next to the shower and toilet fully stocked to help alleviate your hiking odors. Jerry summed it up as a spot in the mountains for resting, but it was a lot more than that to me... It was a place to call home and people to call family. I love you guys!
Speaking of great people, I forgot to shout out Rachel and Rob over at Joe's Island Music, for helping us get back on trail after taking the wrong path near Cutthroat Pass. You guys are the best!