Brrr! We woke up to chunks of ice in our water bottles and frost on our tent. But it helped to have Ed in there with me. It really didn’t feel that cold.Today we both hiked close to 9 miles to the end of Happy Jack. A trail angel had left some Coke and Coors Light at the trailhead, so of course Ed and I had to split a beer.
We woke up this morning just before dawn to the eerie, yet captivating, sound of an elk bugling. The strange sound echoed through the woods and was so cool to hear.
We broke camp before 8 a.m. and went our separate ways. Ed was headed back to the car, which he would move up to the Hwy. 87 trail crossing. I headed up the rest of the Rim.
Ed dropped me off at the Pine trailhead around 7:45 with a day pack. Another short stint of slackpacking! He took care of a few errands in town, then drove to the Webber Creek trailhead 8.7 miles ahead and hiked back in to meet me.
My toes were sporting all of these odd, red patches, which I’m sure are from walking on the rocks and my hiking shoes. I also have a monster blister on the bottom of one heel.
I haven't blogged in a while for a very good reason: I'm thru-hiking the Arizona National Scenic Trail.This trail has been quite challenging, and unlike any other trail I've tackled. I'll post a full report when I'm finished. But for now, please enjoy my trail...
I’m an optimistic person. A PollyAnna. Someone who walks through life with rose-colored glasses. So I started off today’s hike in a great mood. The path was relatively normal! No horrible rocks!
I hated almost every second of today’s hike. That’s because it was 99.9 percent on rocks. Who in the world thinks walking on rocks several days in a row is enjoyable?!
Tim left around 6:30 this morning. It was sad to see him go. We’d had another cold night, but I guess that’s what every night will be. I headed out by 7:45. After being so awful yesterday, the trail was a dream the first few miles — soft dirt, little swells. Of course, that didn’t last.
My feet felt pretty trashed last night. I was also feeling lucky after meeting so many hikers who had serious ailments that were driving them off the trail. So I decided today would be an easy day.
It actually wasn’t that cold last night, so Tim and I slept well. After breakfast, he hiked back 3.1 miles to the car while I forged ahead. The plan was for him to drive up to the Hwy. 87 trailhead, then hike in to meet me.
Last night was another cold one. I guess this is the AZT — cold camping nights. I got up early to make sure I’d be at the Pigeon Spring Trailhead around 3, when Tim was coming.
So here’s the thing about long-distance hiking: You think about food and drink a lot, and you look forward to every “event” — anything different. Today was special because I was going to take the quarter-mile detour to the Roosevelt Lake Marina, where there was food, drink, bathrooms and WiFi.
I laughed today. And cried. Sigh. Such is this trail! Last night was cold, but I was snug in my tent. I had to pack it up wet again, though. The first few miles were a little rugged, plus had lots of downed or bowed vegetation from the early-March snow. I passed CowStep, who told me the correct spelling of his name.
I slept great at Al and Maryjo’s. Maryjo made us waffles, blueberry pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Yum! They are just too kind. Al shuttled Rambler and Gardener to the trailhead early; Cow Step and I went at 7:30.
Last night should have been my first epic camping night. I had a nice spot. It wasn’t too cold or too windy. So what was the problem? My air pad deflated overnight!