When hiking long distances, you have to be flexible and ready to pivot. I kind of hate doing that; I love to follow my plan. But as I looked over my itinerary, I’d need to hike roughly 25 miles (40.2 km) today to get to Lordsburg and stay on schedule. Not too bad if the weather wasn’t so hot and water wasn’t a concern. Nor if I wasn’t so depleted.
I asked Cal about splitting the mileage into two shorter days, where he could again shuttle me on/off the trail and I could stay at the EconoLodge I’d booked in Lordsburg. It was supposed to storm again tonight, and I didn’t want to get soaked a third night in a row. But there wasn’t any trail access for shuttlers. He also noted that the very next part of this stretch involved crossing the Alkaline Flats, which is several miles out under the hot sun, with zero shade.
In the end, I decided to skip this section and come back another time, when the weather is cooler.
Leaving Animas Street Behind
Cal got me from Hachita around 8:15 a.m., then drove me to Lordsburg’s EconoLodge. The owner, who is very hiker-friendly, let me stash my stuff in my room, even though check-in was officially in the afternoon. Yes – slackpacking!
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By the time we got to Animas Street and I began hiking, it was sometime after 10 a.m. But I was excited, as I only had about 7 miles (11.3 km) to hike. The first part of the trek was a tad difficult, in that it was pretty rocky. That hurt my sore feet. But it was generally downhill, and not too hard to follow.
Maybe halfway through the hike I could see Lordsburg in the distance, which was exciting. With about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) to go, I hit the road and walked into town.
Much-Needed Time Off
The EconoLodge is right on the trail, which is so handy. I enjoyed the most wonderful shower, then walked to a local grocery to buy some supplies and food. I was also able to catch up on some work and visit with my hubby.
Oh – I was really glad about my pivot when, around 4 p.m., it just POURED. For quite a while, too. I would have been finishing up my hike if I’d stuck with my itinerary, and it would really have stunk to have gotten everything soaked at the end of the day.
Today’s Miles: 6.4 (10.3 km)
CDT Miles to Date: 64.8 (104.3 km)
CDT Miles to Go: 3,035.2 (4,884.7 km)
Most useful item today: tweezers! There are beautiful, golden grasses on the trail that feel soft as you walk through them. But they lodge prickers in your socks, shoes and gaiters. Some you can pull out by hand, but for the others you need tweezers.