Small cattle tank on the Arizona Trail with trekking poles leaning against it.I’m so excited today to be heading to Kearny, which is a famous trail town. But first, I must discuss last night. So last night’s camping spot was great in many ways. It was grassy and flat. There was no prickly shrubbery nearby. And it wasn’t too cold overnight! For once, I didn’t have to sleep in my coat or hat. 🙂 But sometime near morning, the wind began to howl. Who knows how strong it was blowing. Forty miles per hour? If I stepped out of my tent, it would have blown over.

So I got the tent packed up, stat, then found a sheltered spot under a tree and next to a giant cow pie to make my coffee. After that, it was time to hit the trail!

I hiked about two miles and then came to a black hose. Sequoia told me the best water was here. You just had to follow the hose .1 mile up a hill, then see where it entered a tank and get your water there. He was right. The water looked very clear, although I filtered it, of course. And it tasted better than some water that Amy and Diana got from a Tucson restaurant – ha!

Nasty Climb to Kearny

Arizona Trail winding past saguaros and yellow wildflowers with a bright blue sky studded with puffy clouds.After getting the water, I had about 10 miles or so to get to the Gila River Trailhead near Kearny, where Amy and Diana would be picking me up. I noticed the Guthook app mentioned a “high point” coming up. I saw a mountain in front of me. Surely I wouldn’t have to climb THAT. Wrong.

Up I went. Thankfully, there were some nice switchbacks, so it wasn’t too bad. However, the wind at the top was horrific. I was hiking hunched over for a bit, and worried my tent would come unhooked and fly off the cliff. Luckily, that didn’t happen.

After the climb and ridge, the trail unspooled downhill. When I was really close to the finish, it got pretty hot out. And the trail threw in some nasty uphills amid the overall downhill trend.

Town Night

Diana and Amy picked me up at the trailhead after a little confusion (there are two trailheads close together). They were SO KIND and brought me a cold Coke Zero and a bag of potato chips. YES! I ate/drank both right away, like a pig.

We’re staying at the General Kearny Inn tonight, which is the place where all hikers stay. I think it’s the only place in town to stay, too. Amy washed my clothes for me, the angel, and I took one of the most wonderful showers in the world. Then I repacked my stuff for tomorrow, caught up on email and posted these journal entries.

Now it’s Happy Hour! Diana and Amy go home tomorrow. I’m sad about that. This is a hard trail, and friendly faces help a lot.


12.4 miles today
224.5 miles to date
575.5 miles to go

©2018 Melanie McManus – All Rights Reserved

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