Jacob Leistra / "Game Boy" / PCT 2019

Day 17: Big Bear Lake

Mile 256.2 -> Mile 266.1 -> Hitchhike into Big Bear Lake

The plan was to get into Big Bear Lake, get some food, and get into the motel before the snow started. We made it to a few miles before the CA 18 highway before the wind kicked in. We got the highway, threw a thumb, and a few minutes later Gorn, an awesome trail angel, picked us up to give us a tour of the lake.

We got dropped off at Von’s and began to resupply. This Von’s, unlike the one in Bishop, was popping. It was jammed with tourists and visitors (of which I am one), but I was able to sync up with Sour Patch and Trail Clooney, two hikers I befriended early on in my hike but hadn’t seen in a few days. It’s always cool to catch up with cool people.

We got word from the rest of our group that they were on their way into town, so we suggested seeing Detective Pikachu at the local single theater cinema. We grabbed lunch before realizing we were running out of time, so we hoofed it across town on foot. Carrying 20 pounds of food, a half gallon of juice, and a fifth of whiskey, I was struggling to get there in time. Luckily the other group called us and told us it was sold out, so we ended up just grabbing beers before hitting the motel.

At the motel, we started to unwind and prep for tomorrow. We went to eat at a local Indian/Nepalese restaurant and had a great meal. After leaving, Kacy bought a trail ukelele, we went back to the motel, and watched Lord of the Rings. Another awesome day in a trail town.

Main Photo: A cabin and wind turbine on the edge of Big Bear City, CA on May 26.