What a day. A lot happens in 30 miles on a trail: terrain changes, you leave mountains behind, trees, you enter a land of wind and sky.
From climbing Bridger Peak this morning, to walking across balds with grasses rippling in the wind, to watching endless miles of space unfold, it was a good day.
I met some very generous folks today. As I was walking a two-track road an ATV with 2 couples came up behind me, they were headed just around the bend, and when I caught up with them a few minutes later, they invited me to lunch! Yes!
Gene, Debbie, Kim and Andy all lived in Rawlings and knew the area real well. It was a pleasure chatting over turkey sandwiches, cherries, and home-made cookies! AND I was offered a place to stay when I get to town…Rawlings is just a few days away. So great to have met them!
So I’ve been texting with Lint, my friend and fellow CDT hiker, and it sounds like he’s right behind me….I would love to hike some days with him, and as his daily pace is 35+ miles, I’m not sure how long I can! But he’s planning to get to Rawlings tomorrow (!) so I pushed the miles a bit so that I could hike the 32ish miles from where I’m camped to town as well. See, his girlfriend Justa is supporting him with his truck…and he’s thinking of slack packing the Great Divide Basin…and that would mean good food and cold beer at night…I should at least try big mile days!
Anyway, about 5pm I reached a big road, yet empty for miles in either direction. I started walking and the wind would just not let up. As I had left the trees behind I wasn’t sure where I would camp, it would definitely be challenging in this section.
Getting to town tomorrow night is looking more like a good thing. I was caught in a heavy and extremely windy downpour for a few minutes. All I could do was crouch down in the dirt by the road and brace myself against the wind with my umbrella, almost getting blown over a few times.
I found a little grove of trees just and I was reaching peak fatigue. I can see a deer or antelope made a bed where I pitched my tarp. When in doubt, look for where the animals sleep. You know it’s probably pretty protected.
Ahhh, parmasan noodles, oreos, and more oreos. Good day all around.