170602 – Lake Isabella Zero Day

Day:  040
Date:  Friday, 02 June 2017
Start:  Walker Pass, Hwy 178 crossing, at Mile 652.1, 5276 ft

Finish:  Walker Pass, Hwy 178 crossing, at Mile 652.1, 5276 ft

Daily Miles:  0.0 PCT, 4.0 around town
Total PCT Miles:  652.1
Weather:  Very warm and sunny
Accommodation:  Lake Isabella Motel
     Breakfast:  Breakfast skillet
     Lunch:  Egg salad sandwich
     Dinner:  Hamburger and fries, and three small fruit tarts
Aches:  None
Highlight:  Sad, I know, but probably getting my detached crown reglued, though the dentist was a little pessimistic about the longevity of the work (and only $125).
Lowlight:  Dr Google confirmed my suspicion that I have a case of giardiasis, an infection of the gut, which is not uncommon amongst hikers and usually acquired through drinking polluted water.  I won’t go into the gory details, but I tick nearly all of the symptom boxes.  I don’t think I have a serious case, or I wouldn’t still be hiking 20+ miles a day, but it does explain why I’ve been a little sub-par for the last week or so.  It has also made me lactose intolerant (and I love my milkshakes and flavoured milk when in town).  I went to a clinic in the hope of getting antibiotics, but they said I needed to go to the nearest hospital emergency department (6 miles away) where they had the facilities to test for the infection.  In the end, I decided not to bother as it will likely resolve itself in the next week or so and the symptoms generally last a few weeks more, regardless of whether antibiotics are administered (according to Dr Google).
Pictures:  No pictures today

Map:  Click here for Google Map

I didn’t have a very good night’s sleep, and in the morning spent some time researching my suspicions that I have giardiasis on Google.  I’m convinced my diagnosis is correct.  I also researched the foods I should avoid, and will try to do so for the next few weeks.  There was a clinic on the way to the diner where I planned to have breakfast, so I dropped in and asked if it was possible to see a doctor, and they pointed me towards the hospital (see above), but I went to the diner instead.

Nelda’s Diner was #1 on Tripadvisor restaurants in Lake Isabella, so I thought it worth the 1.5 mile trek from my motel to see why.  Like some other recent towns, Lake Isabella is very spread out, and everything is a long way from the motel.  There are many vacant lots, empty shop fronts and other closed businesses, and the place generally has a rundown feel, though there are exceptions.  There are also a number of homeless people hanging around, despite it only being a very small town.  Anyway, contrary to these generalisations, Nelda’s was atmospheric and buzzing and I was glad I had made the trip.  I enjoyed one of their breakfast specials, but passed on one of their trademark milkshakes (see above).  There were two pages of flavours, so it was a difficult decision.

After that, it was shopping for the next few days in a huge and very busy supermarket and then some food repacking back at the motel.   In the early afternoon,  I had my detached crown reglued at the local dentist and collected my new sleeping bag liner, which had now arrived at the Post Office.

Tomorrow, I’ll have an early breakfast at a coffee shop near to the highway where I plan to start hitchiking back to the trail tomorrow.  I hope it goes as smoothly as the hitch into town, but I’m not counting on it.

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7 Responses to 170602 – Lake Isabella Zero Day

  1. David Pass says:

    Hey Dave, has been great following you for the last couple of weeks. Got onto your blog through a friend (Wal) who is a Terrigal Trotter. Tracey (my wife) and I plan to do the same next year and our schedule looks very similar to yours. It makes our upcoming trip seem very real. Glad you got your sleeping bag liner, you may need all the extra warmth you can get when you get past KM in a few days.
    David Pass
    BTW registered for GNW 100km this week.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. judy says:

    giardiasis !! Hey dave you can clear a very crowded room very quickly with a fart when you have this , but you probably already know that !!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. judy says:

    dave , you should be able to pick up some Flagyl (antibiotics) this is the only one that works…..I know by experience ….not sure about health stuff over there but some countries sell them over the counter……good luck


    • Dave Byrnes says:

      I asked a pharmacist, Judy, but they said there was nothing they could give me to help without a prescription 😦 I’m sure I’ll be OK.


  4. Steve Hughes says:

    Hi Dave, it’s been interesting following the highs and lows of your trip so far. Much tougher and drier than we all magined. The “table of knowledge ” has reviewed your current health crisis and offers following:
    1/ keep nose clear of zipped or hooded sleeping bag.
    2/ avpid freckle coming into contact with naked flame.
    3/ don’t trust a fart unless you think it’s fashionable wearing trouser crutch around your knees.
    Trust you find this helpful.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Stephen Williams says:

    You are in an area that I spent some time in a few years ago (birding, of course). I didn’t stay at the Lake Isabella Motel, but I did stay at the Kern River Inn not far to the north. As you probably know the area has a great variety of habitats and hence a great variety of birds and other wildlife besides the scenery. By the way, I’m going to be in Northern California or possibly Southern Oregon in early August. I’ll try to keep track of where you are in case there is a chance to meet. Good luck and hope you get over your intestinal issues soon.

    Liked by 1 person

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