Day 24: Surprise Trip to the ER

April 14, 2018


The next morning we were supposed to grab a hearty early breakfast and hitch to the trail, but I awoke in the wee hours with a terrible UTI and ended up having to go to the ER. It was 6:30am when I hustled out of the hostel to catch the local transit to the hospital. My wait to see a doctor wasn’t long, but it took about 2 hours to get a diagnosis and complete my visit, then I had to wait an hour for the nearest pharmacy to open and another 45 minutes after that for the bus to take me back to the hostel.

All in all, my sudden medical crisis took 4 hours in town and I didn’t get back until 10:30am. I’d told Sparky and Ghosthiker to go on without me if they wanted to, but they insisted on waiting for me. They’ve waited on me a lot and will probably be waiting on me a lot more as time goes on. I just hoped I wouldn’t wear out their grace. 

The official checkout time was 9am but Sarge was super understanding. Sparky and Ghosthiker moved my stuff into the common room for me and I was able to get packed and ready to go pretty quickly.

The hitch to the trailhead was easy and we managed to get in about 10 miles before finding a really great spot to camp. We weren’t sure if we were technically still in bear country so we hung our food bags just in case. I had purchased a small jar of sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil which I then transferred to a Ziploc bag, and then I double-bagged it, but it still managed to break open and leak into my food bag. Of course, I didn’t discover this until we started making dinner in camp. Unfortunately, sun-dried tomato oil got all over a few things in my bag as well as my pants while I was taking stuff out. So now my food has been separated into Ziplocs, my new Opsac is garbage because it has yet another hole in it, and I had to hang my pants with our food bags because they smell like sun-dried tomato oil. 

Sparky took this photo. That’s Ghosthiker behind me.

Otherwise, even though my foot was still really tender, the hike that day wasn’t bad at all. It was actually an easy day. I practically consumed my weight in water all day so I was constantly having to stop and pee, and I moved more slowly than the others so as to not push my foot too hard, so it was easier to squat when and where I needed to without having to wait for them to be out of sight. They are lovely people. Lil’ Bro had set out much earlier than we did because of my little emergency and we didn’t see him at all that day, but that was OK. We’d see him again eventually. 

As I hiked in solitude I considered how far I’d come, knowing I probably still had around 100 or so days left on this adventure. I hoped I’d be able to make it. I was missing my family a lot that day. And Zoe. 

The air was so still in camp that night, it was a little eerie but certainly made for a nice change from the wind.

Day 25: Where We’re Reminded it’s the PCT’s Anniversary

Published by rogerssj23

I'm a long-distance hiker, an audiobook producer, and an amateur writer. I live in the woods in a renovated 1972 Airstream with my Golden Retriever Zoe. Read more about my hiking adventures at

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