So imagine yourself in the Mojave Desert and you catch some bug that causes rampant dehydration. This seems to be what happened to Cari Tucker, AKA Sandals, according to the guy who found her on the trail and did what any hiker would do; helped get her out of a major jam. From the latest Trail Journals Entry by Manynames Tom:
Now we are getting into real Mojave desert and it has it’s consequences… Yesterday, at about 7 p.m. I found a sick hiker “Sandals” laying beside the trail. She was dehydrated and displayed symptoms of food poisoning or Giardia. I camped there with her trying to get some liquids in her systems and this morning I ran 4 miles to get some water. Unfortunately she did not improve enough to hike down on her own. I called 911 from her cell and was cut off. Another hiker came by and stayed with her while I ran down and got some help. She was rescued soon.
Tom is an immigrant from Poland who’s been in the U.S. for about 10 years. Long-distance hiking seems to be his favorite thing to do, but it appears he did find time for some wilderness first aid training, which paid off dearly here.
You may recall Cari as the woman who broke her ankle hiking in Europe last year. This year she had to leave the trail for awhile to attend her mom’s funeral, then got back on the trail only to develop nasty foot pain that required an extended layover at Hiker Heaven. Her last update was on June 7 at Mile 476, when she reported her foot was doing fine. It wouldn’t surprise me for her next entry to say she’s hitching a ride to Kennedy Meadows and heading for Mount Whitney.
There’s never any telling what nature has in store when you try to hike for six months straight. Some folks dash up the trail like it’s nothing, others have to fight for every mile. This year was an especially nasty one for crossing the Southern California desert; amazes me that people put themselves through that.
In any case, let’s send some positive karma in Cari’s direction.