Miles 866.5-874 (15 miles including the side trail to Mono Hot Springs
This morning was awesome! Faceplant and Gecko walked by our camp, followed by Hee Haw and Problem Bear. Those are the two guys in the pic, Problem Bear is the guy in front. I also got a pic of Hee Haw's guitar, it's the thing in the white bag strapped to the front of his pack. It's a carbon fibre guitar made by Emerald, and they sponsored him by sending him that guitar for free. Hee Haw is a professional musician, he's awesome. Double Sprainbow and Itchy also passed us, I took a pic of them too. It's awesome, Double Sprainbow is the only other Asian girl ive seen on trail. How is it that Asian people make up 1/3 of the world population, yet there's hardly any on trail. Lol.
After about 7.5 miles, we took a side trail to get to mono hot springs. It was absolutely amazing. We took the Bear Creek Trail which is a 5 mile side trail off the PCT. Not only did we avoid a really lame 1,000' ascent on the PCT, but Bear Creek Trail was by far the most gorgeous section of the trail I've been on thus far. And it isn't even a part of the pct!! I took 3 pics of the trail. The water was so clear we were counting the all fish we could see. The whole trail was so surreal, at times I felt like I was almost in a tropical location. The bugs weren't that bad either! Kyle and I were just absolutely losing our minds the whole time. It was *so* beautiful.
We ran into 2 locals (Balding Eagle and Roam) who were hiking. They confirmed the trail did go to mono hot springs. Yay! That's cool, because the trail wasn't labeled on our map so Kyle and I just took the trail assuming it would take us in the correct general direction. Lol. We later saw 2 other hikers who had a map of the area, and they also, confirmed we were going the right way. Balding Eagle said the Bear Creek Trail was his favorite in all the sierras. I can see why. There are so many epic camp spots along that trail too.
The trail dumped us out on a dirt road so we had quite a road walk. Balding Eagle and Roam drove by us and gave us a ride to the springs. Yay! Man I was sooooo tired. It's been a strenuous last couple of days. :)
Mono Hot Springs is really cool. It's a family owned, tiny destination resort in the middle of the sierras, and a lot of families vacation here. They have cabins for rent and a campsite. Kyle and I ended up just ninja camping on the other side of the river. I'm not sure if we were supposed to, but no one said we couldn't. Sometimes it's easier/more efficient to ask for forgiveness than permission :D. Its so cool, our tent is setup about 20' from a water tank that's spitting out natural hot water, and we're about 100' away from the nearest hot spring. Life is good <3