Maiden Peak – The Long Slog

Peak Summited2019 Maiden Peak
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadPacific Crest Trail - Highway 58
EncounteredWildflowers blooming
Hiking CompanionsHiked with a group
Road ConditionsRoad suitable for all vehicles
Bug StatusBugs were terrible
Snow ConditionsIntermittent snow - not hard to cross
Trail ConditionsTrail in good condition

Holy cramoly, this hike was a beast. By this point in our hiking trip, we were 38 miles into our 100-mile trip.

The hike itself was pleasant; we were able to keep a good pace, the snow was minimal, and the elevation gain was practically nonexistent… until the very end, at which point, it REALLY turned into a hike. The last mile and a half of this trail on the way to the summit was probably tied for the steepest section of trail for our entire trip.

The two things that really made this hike a slog were the distance, 17 miles round-trip, and the mosquitoes. I have never, in my life, been attacked this viciously by mosquitoes. I had mistakenly tied my laces too tightly over the top of my left foot and didn't notice until we were by the Rosary Lakes. So I thought to myself, “no big deal, I'll just re-tie my shoes.” WRONG. I lean down to untie my shoe and right as I get the laces undone, an absolute swarm of mosquitoes engulfs me. I swat at the flying demons and move forward a few steps at a time, trying to tie my shoe at the same time, continuing this process until I finally get the shoe somewhat tied. I must have looked like quite the sight; a hunchback grabbing his foot with one hand, swatting at the air with the other and stumbling forward.

We finally got to a point where I could properly re-tie my shoe, but the damage had already been done , unbeknownst to me, resulting in light-grade tendonitis that was destined to worsen over the remainder of the trip.

All said and done, it was a good hike, but please, please, please, somebody find a way to get rid of these mosquitoes.

55 miles down, over halfway there!


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