Day 19 leaving Doc Cambells + Gila cliff dwellings

May 2nd 2022

I woke early and dozed as I didn’t have to rush as the Cave Dwellings did not open until  8.30.
I eventually packed up and took my pack to the  shelter, my god it was heavy. Can I carry this !!.
I put on a brew, that will make everything okay.
I wasn’t sure if I wanted to see the caves or put in miles but the caves won. I hoisted up my pack and set off down the tarmac (pavement in the usa) .It was 7am and already heating up.

It  was 4 miles but I had misread the guide and so went to visitors centre, there was an exhibition here which was really informative and I filled my bottles with  fresh cold water.
Okay so now I have to walk back the way I came then a miles to the caves.
At last I came to caves. I was met by the ranger who briefed me on the site. Said I should take water and sunscreen and showed me where to leave my pack.
As I crossed  the bridge I met Shoes and Co coming back across the bridge..
The path snakes around crossing numerous bridges climbing ever higher, every now and then I got a glimpse of the dwellings wow!.

And to think these people built all of this with simple hand tools maybe bone or sharp stones..

At last I was here, omg its amazing.
I made my way through the labyrinth  of rooms imaging how they lived, I found it fascinating.
Okay time to go down.
Once down I topped up with water before hoisting my pack and strolling out, Well that was well worth the visit.
Again I headed back the way I came until I reached the trail head.
There were guys doing maintenance on the start, but they waved me through.
Of course the trail starts climbing and the temp is 97 and it climbs and climbs and climbs and it’s roasting. Then I’m on a very steep part with nowhere to stop. I’m puffing and panting until at last I’m at the top and I collapse in a heap.
I’m just getting my breath back when Band-Aid appears she joins me on my break.
As we sit several more hikers arrive and depart . Band-Aid then leaves but I need just a little more time  before I set off after them.
The trail spirals down into a river bed and its sandy . I hate sand. Its sand…….
I begin to followed it along , and it begins to get damp and then it turns into a stream.. When I turn a corner its just wow, I am now in an amazing canyon.

Breath taking in places wow..
It was soon time to stop again , I sat with 2 girl hikers doing their first thruhike.  Impressed.!
After lunch I crossed my first river crossing and with big fish. My mileage was slow as I had to  keep stopping to stare  at the scenery as it was breathtaking. 

Okay snail come on or it will be bed time. I put my head down and pushed several hrs later I came to Jordan Hotsprings,I decided to take a peek. When I arrived the two girls from earlier where relaxing in the warm waters, I stripped to my boxers and joined them.
The pools were clear and so warm, I could have stayed here all day as i relaxed several other hikers joined us but after 40 minutes  I needed to move as it was now 4pm.

As I moved on I passed numerous campsites  but far too early dam lol.
As I crossed the river yet again it was now 6.30, I watered up then began looking for a camp spot.
Perfect and with a great view.
I quickly put up my tent then took off my shoes and put on my camp shoes. I then took my shoes and socks and washed then in the river. 

Okay dinner.

Miles 7

Videos on YouTube Snailtrainers Adventures 

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