I slept so well but woke up soaked in sweat. that’s a new one.
I visited the loo then put on water to boil, as I quickly stripped down my tent and packed up.
I quickly slurped my tea followed by a cereal bar then it was time to hoist up my pack.
it was just gone 7.30 as I made my way back to the trail from the Shelter. the first part was steep oh so steep, but it eventually it evened out. from this point it wasn’t too bad as I set off to catch my friends (no hope)
it was much cooler as I climbed, and I seemed to be flying down the trail, serenaded by the wood peckers.
once again the trail resembled a Roller coaster of up and downs. I stopped every now and then to pause for breath and take a swig of lemonade. I seemed to be doing well as I neared the spot where everybody wanted to get to last night
Although there was one bigger climb to go, as I nearer the halfway point I began to meet several trail people (who maintain the trail). They were putting in some new steps. I watched in amazement as 5 very old men came down carrying huge logs on their shoulders as I puffed and panted my way up. AT last I reached the top wow what amazing views, but maybe overrated from what they were all saying as it was so windy you wouldn’t want to pitch your tent. Up here
I hiked on passing 250 miles small whoop and at last I was heading down.my original goal was to do about 14 miles more if I had it in my tank. I wanted to hike till 1pm making 5 hrs but I was tiring and so found some shade shady for a break.
I ate some snacks and glugged some lemonade before studying my maps, the next shelter was 2 miles away, up a bloody big hill.
okay let’s see where I can get too. I slung on my pack and marched down the trail. it wasn’t long until the hill started and once again it was hot oh so hot.
I stopped and grabbed more water. I was just leaving when Big Red caught me.
I’ve been chasing you all day snail he said.
I laughed and let him pass as he’s much faster than me
I continued the climb as my slow pace. It was so hot, and they had done a controlled burn so there was not much shade. eventually I emerged out onto a meadow and began to go down and not far ahead I could see the shelter and big Red.
I dropped .my pack then went to get more water as in this heat I am drinking gallons.
we chatted for a while. the road was 6 miles away, but I wasn’t sure if I could do that. so, aimed for 264.
I set off and was soon greeted by another huge hill that really sapped my strength and made think. I should have stayed at the shelter. I really struggled up that hill as I was low on oomph. finally, I made it over checked my map and decided to push on to the car park. Luckily it was down but it was hot, and I was knackered
Eventually I came to the car park totally exhausted. there were numbers to call for shuttles, but I had no service. and it was late 7pm.
As I crossed the road there was a Ranger sat in his truck.
he said that Hot Springs appeared to be full, but he phoned a few people. sadly no one answered so I found a spot and put up my tent. we will try again in the morning