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The challenge of hiking in Big Sur

As I drove from eastern California to the coast I thought for sure that there would be ample phone reception so I decided to wait and text my location once I figured out what trailhead I was going to head in from. I had been hiking in Big Sur about 15 years ago so I had a little knowledge of the area. I was using a Big Sur hiking book as my guide for the trip and I wanted to try and reach Sykes hot springs from the remote eastern trailheads as opposed to the most popular trail that starts on the coast. I headed into the windy backroads south of Carmel and found navigation to be confusing and my phone was not helping. The days were getting shorter so I decided to head for the national forest campgrounds on the coast which are located 50 miles down highway 1. I got there right at sunset to find a $35 dollar site and still no cell coverage. In the morning I parked at the trailhead on the coast that heads up into the mountains rising over 5000 feet to the top of Cone peak. I knew there was rain in the forecast but I had no way of getting weather updates. I headed in expecting some rain and hopefully some reception in the higher elevations.

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