I was up early I wanted to smash some miles as i wasn’t happy with yesterday’s effort.
I was packed by 5 30 had my cuppa and some instant oats for added energy. Then I was off
On trail by 6 whoop
It was a fair gentle climb to begin with then I circled down through several forests it was still partly dark so every blind corner I called our hey bear just to be safe.the trail meandered a little before behind to climb.
I then saw something on trail but couldn’t quite make it out.
It wasn’t a bear…
It was a section hiker Cowboy camping directly on trailthat really made me smile.
I passed by and had a small climb before I emerged at the springs. The water was tasty I didn’t filter. But I wished I had taken more.**
Then trail then hid from me .but I managed to find. It was post to post and you had to scan ahead to find the next.
The views scuttled away as I got near to them.
The trail now spanned several huge meadows/ fields. In the distance it looked like a field of sheep but no just white rock.
I was loving this section it was flat with plenty to see.
I pushed on feeling really pleased with my pace. Up ahead was a cattle grid a good place to stop and adjust every thing. I decanted some water in to my other bottle then flavoured it and glugged it straight down.
But!! I should have checked where the next water was first.10 miles..
Yes I have enough for that **
I had just started walking even then the rancher came by on his Atv.
He stopped for a chat hes off to check on water at the springs
I said the far one is running OK.
He asked if I was a CDT hiker.
Yes I said your going to have a lovely morning pointing at the big mountain range in front of me
F*uck F*uck I said to myself
Yes that looks like lot of FUN?!!
now this is when I realise I should have gotten more water especially if I’m climbing in the sun.
Steve then said if you make it to a certain lake my friends have a camp there ask them for beer.
Perfect I will need one after this I laughed.
I set of down the windy road, F*uck should have gotten more water. As my bladder was quite empty too.
I followed the road until it came to a fence. I undid it walked through then fastened it again .
I was nervous of the huge mountains in front of me.
And the more I walked the bigger they became. I pushed on down the road until I heard the sound of the Atv coming back. Steve had checked his water as he passed he wished me good luck again before speeeding off sadly not in the direction that I was going .
I followed the meandering road to the junction . The CDT is always up so easy to follow.
It started steep.
Of course its a Atv track i stared into the distance it was a long way away and steep almost climbing into the clouds
Snail why didn’t you bring more water now why didn’t I.
At last I was getting nearer to the trees I would take a break there.
At last I arrived puffing and panting and bloody hot.
I dumped my pack on the ground and lay down under à tree in the shade until I had cooled down.
Then I took off my shoes and socks before eating snacks.
I took 20 minutes then resumed the trail as I puffed my way up the top I thought that’s a nice campsite and that’s a nice campsite
At last i was at the top but my joy turned to despair. On the other side I could see that I headed down then immediately back up.
NO NO NO….oh well I pushed on down snd then once again was the climb snd to begin with bloody steep.
Then the dirt road stopped at a gate and became a single track or trail.
I pushed on up and soon was in a cool forest and there were switchbacks . I scoured the trail for signs of water… There were none.i sipped slowly on my bladder. It had to last 10 Mile’s
Not a chance in hell
This trail was really nice but I wasn’t enjoying it as I was concerned about water.
The trail now began to head down and to my left off trail was a large green area.
NB anything really green means water (usually)
I bushwacked my way across. But sadly only boggy hoof holes.
Disappointed I bushwacked back to the trail. Ahead I could see the trail snake up another huge hill but beneath it was another green oasis. Fingers crossed.
I pushed on climbing and heading to another forest.
Once again it was cool ..I needed cool. As I began to exit the forest I crossed over a dry creek bed.
I wonder I thought.
So headed right and down a few yards and I could hear water then I could see water. I dropped my pack and took my two water bottles to fill.
The water looked good ice cold.but I filtered it just in case I then topped up my bladder. Once done I then chugged the other bottle.
I felt great now. I have water.
I bushwacked back to the trail and up as I climbed I noticed another hiker far below.
I pushed on climbing for a while untill I came to a huge cairn
God am I climbing up there?
But no thank god, the trail now began to follow the contours of the hill. Phew.
Then I began to head down and there were great switchbacks
The switchbacks went on for about anhour until I emerged out by deadmans lake.
The lake was a glorious blue and I could see some large fish
I dropped my pack under the shade of several trees.
I needed to look at my feet as both were hot on the soles
The hot road walking didn’t help
I added tape with some cushioning. Then removed the inner soles and cleaned out the air holes hopefully that my help.
Okay lets go but I grabbed another bottle of water just in case.
Once across the lake it was up a steep long up. Omg and it was hot I pushed on until At last itt behan to level out
I needed 4 miles on this dirt road before I turned off to lakes
I pushed on but my feet were still very sore think it because some of the trail is like walking in a house gutter so you foot slides in the shoe and then there are the little rocks.
I pushed on pleased that at least there was decent scenery to look at. 1 hr pased okay that’s 2 miles 2 to go…then it was 1 and then I was at the sign for the lakes.
I now began to struggle I was tired my feet hurt but it was far too easy to stop,and of course the next bit was steep.
After an hour I came to a small oasis. That would be perfect I paused shall I camp….
I thought for a few minutes then carried on walking up this steep dusty road.
I then heard the distinctive sound of a ATV. it was a man and boy and they were out fishing as there were numerous lakes up ahead
I continued up until I came to a second oasis. That’s another perfect spot. But no I pushed on
but decided to stop at the next big hill.so I did. I ate the rest of my snacks and glugged more water.
Okay I will walk to six I decided .
I pushed on passing several ponds. Then the man and joy came back .
This time he stopped for a chat.
Where you headed he asked ?
I’m just going to do anothrt hour I replied.
At the next pond I got water and washed myself down.
Okay I head to the next pond 3 miles thst will do me.
As i climbed I met a sobo. A German girl called walkie-talkie.
Your the first person I have seen all day.
Okay snail to the next pond
Again a few small climbs then I dropped down into an open airy woods and every few yards were perfect camp spots but I needed water I exited the woods and as I dropped down I was at the pond. I walked to the far right and dropped my pack f
Got a bottle of water and filtered it. Then I got another bottle and washed my hair. God it felt good I was just deciding where to put my tent when Jacoby appeared.he wasn’t sure whether to camp go on or what.
I spied a place under the trees and soon had my tent up.and began cooking.
Jacoby tented just a few yards away
Well 28 miles today but then the they way my feet hurt Im not surprised