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[pct-l] Hitching experiences

Here is a rundown of my hitch-hiking highlights while on the PCT.  99
percent of the time I had a sign.

Tehachapi - There was a guy at the Cameroon Overpass, he was looking for
something.  Turned out to be cigarettes.  He gave me a ride to Tehachapi.
On the ride there he told me he had just gotten out of prison (but he had a
nice car).  His wife told him to turn himself in and get that out off the
way (he never said what it was, and I didn't ask).  While he was in prison,
his wife ran off with one of his friends.  So he was pretty distraught.

Lone Pine -  While I was trying to hitch out of Independence (up to Bishop),
a guy pulled up to me and asked me where I was headed.  Turns out he saw me
from a restaurant, and figured it might take me awhile to get picked up.  He
drove me clear up to Bishop.  Neat guy.

Bishop - I was walking down the street in Bishop.  A guy in a truck went
past me and slammed on his brakes.  He hopped out of his truck and asked if
I was on the PCT.  He was really eager to help me, and pretty bummed when I
said that I was heading back south to Lone Pine the next day.  The next day
an older woman picked me up.  She had been driving all across the US, seeing

Belden - This one takes the cake.  After waiting an hour is busy traffic,
got a ride in to Quincy, I was craving hardcore restaurant food.  I couldn't
get a ride back out of Quincy.  Got hassled by the cops.  Kicked out of
Round Table Pizza for eating to much buffett pizza.  (What is wrong with
eating 30 slices of pizza for $3.99?)  Bad memories there.  Had to spend the
night behind Feather River College.  Took ALL DAY to get back to Belden.
The Belden/Quincy area is a very redneck conservative area.  That is what I
was told, and later experienced.

Castella - I got food poising from a rangers sandwich (fire brigade) on
grizzly mountain.  Had to go up to Mt. Shasta City for some hardcore poop
pills.  A really nice logger guy drove me up there.  The ride back was the
real gem.  As I'm sitting on the entrance ramp to I-5 in Mt. Shasta City, a
beat up Buick stops.  The back of the car is filled with clutter.  There is
a guy in the car slightly older than me.  Very friendly.  Had a dog named
snoopy.  As we were driving to Castella, he said.  "Yeah, I've been up in
the mountains for a week.  I've been totally wacked out on crank, I haven't
slept in five days!!!  He owned a landscaping business, and though he had
not slept in 60+ hours, he was able to give me a detailed view of his
business.  He didn't have to work at all, so he had time for *other*
activities.  His name was Craig too.

Crater Lake - Met a girl named Alicia, and we hung out for a couple days.
Fun time.

These are just a few, but overall I found that hitchhiking wasn't a problem.
To eho what Dave Encisco said....always be friendly.  Not everyone will pick
you up, and some will throw crap at you.  Some will even buy you dinner.  A
sign is very important if you want to get picked up quicker.  Adding "PCT
hiker" to a sign has helped at times too.  Just whatever you do, don't hitch
to Quincy from Belden, unless you have a ride back.
Gee thinking about all of this makes me want to drop everything and hit the
trail again.  Maybe next year.

visit the PCT planner at:

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