Mules Ear Spring – Sierra City
The first person I saw today was a pretty gray haired lady. She smiled at me and said, “You’re going north?! Oh, you’re really late to be hiking north, aren’t you?” It felt really un-encouraging. No hello, just hey you’re late.
I guess I do hear the same questions and comments on bike trips. Where did you start? How far do you ride every day? Are you scared? When I was in Japan, the fact that everyone asks the same questions made it easier to have conversations with folks on the street. Even though I don’t speak Japanese, I could usually guess what people wanted to know. That was less annoying, since it was in another language.But touring in America, yeah that’s endlessly the same questions and comments over and over forever. I don’t know if it makes everyone else crazy. I’d rather hide in the bushes and not hear it.
It feels like I see less when I am focused on ticking off the miles. Or maybe these woods are different. More mossy.
I came around the corner to find a mother deer and two long-eared fawn. They weren’t the least bit scared of me. We had a few minutes of mutual curious staring. They really are pretty animals.
It was getting dark when I walked into Sierra City. Everything was already closed for the night. Hikers can camp at the local church, although there were multiple signs warning that this privilege might be lost due to bad hikers being disrespectful. There’s also a public bathroom with a free, freezing cold public shower. I took one because I was filthy, but it was painful.