Okay chores.i grabbed my sleeping bag and set off down town I tried hitching first then just gave up..i watched as several busses past me..I could have caught one maybe
about 30mins later I passed the French boys and bandaid I waved. I as I continued the bus came the other way. I waved it down.the driver was very helpful. And offered to take me to the post office.as we drove back around bandaid got on.
At last we were at the post office .i bounced my food box but my bag was not there dam.the Post lady said it my be logged in if I pop back in a hr.
I headed across the road and had a coffee and breakfast bagel the bagel was so so good.
As I sat there I checked Rei oh they havnt shipped yet. Okay
I finished my coffee as I was leaving I asked the owner if there was any onein town who did sports massage.
To my amazement she said yes I use this lady and gave me her number.
I then asked a random question.
Do you happen to have scales here? Her husband said yes would you like to weigh yourself.
He produced the scales and I stepped on 198lb oh my I’ve lost 20lb.
I thanked them and walked back to the post office. As I arrived the bus returned so I jumped on and headed home.
We passed by the fire station znd sat out dide were snout a dozen kids in fire helmets ah bless.
Once in my room i cracked a beer and rang Rei to see if I could change the address snd delivery.
I spoke to a lady called Morgan who was super helpful.
It appears that both my items are here and at the Usps depot but are waiting g for release. But no one knows why.i spent an hr on the phone .its seems a fuck up by usps. But They were not able to drop it to my motel.
It could be that both items are at the post office tomorrow.but the post office closes at 12pm tomorrow. So Rei are going to sent me a duplicate to Cuba. Fingers crossed.
Okay I’m happy either that.
I next rang the physio. And I have an appointment for 10.45 am tomorrow fingers crossed.
Okay shopping. I headed to walmart and got most of my stuff except spam singles lol.
Okay home tv and nothing
I settled on the bed cracked a beer and caught up on blog.
Later I cooked a lasagne that I picked up from walmart.very tasty. Impressed.
I woke early and could hear others packing but wasn’t sure who? When i emerged to have a wee,The boys were ready to walk out.
I was worried about them being on the road this early, although at this time it will probably be quite.
I began packing up and soon I was ready.i visuted the toilet, the luxury of sitting on a seat lol.
Okay i was ready
I marched out laughing as I saw Dr Tom had left his old water bottle.
It was a cool.morning as i walked past the lava fields, back dropped by the cliffs to my right
I started at agood pace trying to.ignore the pain in my hip I pushed on and then decided iwas hurting too much. Ahead sat shoes and Chameleon. Shoes was also beatup . okay reluctantly we decided we were going to hitch
No hiker wants to do this but pushing on injured could lead to getting off trail permanently.
The third car stopped and we managed to squeeze in .he wasn’t going all the way but we really didn’t care.
But as we drove and chatted he changed his mind and ended taking us all the way .
We were soon in Grants..he then agreed to take shoes to where ever his package was.so I got out.
Across the road was motel 6 fingers crossed there is a room.
I went for three nights and discounted it was $60 a night.
I found my room and collapsed on the bed.
Okay I stripped off and used the shower.once clean I began to go through my gear.
Okay now I can relax.i began working on my WordPress blog.
Okay laundry I got some change and started laundry
Next. I walked to the shop got some bits and of course beer.
Dam I’ve brought two pockets of the same by mistake.
I dried my laundry Okay im hungry.
It seems like every thing is down town 2 miles away. Oh hold on there’s a taco bell across the street.i put on my shoes and headed out. I ordered two burritos and fries. They tasted device, washed down with cold beer result.
I spent the next few hours flicking through the numerous channels before bed.
I slept so well maybe it was thd Mileage from yesterday.
But I am feezing. I was just packing up when the boys walked past me.
I quickly set off after them but on the flat they have a quick pace.
The firstc water was .5 and so it wasn’t long until I arrived there.
I walked up the track past the tank. Behind it was the solar panel. I switch it on and wTer flowed great I topped upmy bottles and felt quite smug.
Several hours later I came across the two boys resting under the shade of a road sign so decided to join them. . It wasnt long until Risemarry.Old bag and twerk arrived..we discussed our route then set off.
Once again the road just snaked off into the distance.
Around this time my hip really begun to hurt and my pace slowed. I.pushed on but wasnt happy. Up ahead Rosemary and Co turned to cross a field to the next water source another solar well.
I was sure I had plenty so pushed on still hurting. I soon came to a real road and turned right. I was hurting and put out my thumb. Then changed my mind and pushed on after about an hr I took a break under a tree.It want long until all the others joined me.
We sat there for 20 minutes
Twerk was hurting too and was debating about hitching too.
So many hikers are getting injured mainly feet and legs as its so tough especially all the road waking.
Water was in 4 miles.i can do that I said as my bladder was out.
We all set off but the boys were soon out of sight.normally I can keep up but not today.
The girls were holding back because of Twerk.
After several hrs we arrived st the next cow tank. Cows were actually swimming in it .Nice.
But fresh water flowed from the solar well. We all topped up and rested. The girls then arrived but no sign of Twerk.
Okay it’s four more to the picnic ground and that makes 20 miles.
I wasn’t sure if I had 4 more miles in me. But set off after the boys.
Once again they were soon out of sight and they was alo a dust vloud ahead luckily it missed me.
The hours ticked down I really wanted to camp but there was nothing no shade no cover nothing. I pushed on still hurting I could see trees in the distance. Maybe I could get there!!.
As I got nearer I noticed two bodies lying under a hedge. It was hawkeye and Dr Rob. Good spot boys. I joined them .I have my eyes on those trees I said.i was hoping there was a gate.
As we sat there the girls arrived.
There is the picnic area 1.1 ahead.
Picnic area can mean food and treats so pushed my self on.
I arrived about 20 minutes after the others.
Snail no camping here.
Oh I said but there were picnic tables and drop toilets.
I walked further in and at the second picnic tables were Shoes and Chameleon. Shoes was also injured and had his foot bandaged.
So I put upmy tent and joined them on the bench. Hawkeye and Dr Rob then appeared and joined us too.
May be my hip maybe sun but I felt really unwell . And quite faint.shoes gave me a lot of his water but it took me about an hour to feel better.
Hawkeye and Dr Rob cowboy camped so did Shoes and Chameleon. And I retired to my tent.
I slept so well except for the huge weight pressing on my stomach my steak from last night lol
I pulled the plug on my mattress and began the chore of packing up. Although I had sorted out my stuff I still had far too much.
I collapsed my tent and stowed it on my pack thrncartiedcmy packn to the deck. I carried the bixes znd stuff and sieted between hiker box and trash.i got fresh water then a coffee. I was stalling. Snail you need to leave.
But still I was fannying around.
At last I left I said good bye to the toaster house and marched off up the road.
My pack was heavy water and food. Too much food. I will get that right one day.
Today was just going to be road walking a very long road walk all the way to Grants such fun !!
After two hrs I stopped for a break and as I had cell service managed to renew my phone contract phew result.
This dirt road we all all hiking up is actually the main highway amazing. And it was busy.polite drives slowed down as they passed you ,other flew past at scary speeds showering you in a cloud of dust. Such fun!!.
I kept swapping sides depending on the toad surface as dome sides were sand and other was a harder gravel. . This road snaked off far into the distance. Forever or so it seemed.i pushed on and on in the dust.
After about 15 miles I arrived at a farm that showed on the map that it had water.
Once I walked inside I was suppressed to see Hawkeye and Dr Rob.also yonny was here and a few others.
I topped up for water and chatted for a while. The boys left first then I set off after them. I ended up walking with Yonny and he seemed to want a slower pace so we walked together we told each other our life stories as we walked. When we stopped for a break it was 5pm and we had completed 21 miles on the day.
It was still early but I was happy with that so decided to stay.
Yonny cooked dinner but wanted more miles. So headed out.
I cooked my heaviest foods and then went to bed early
Omgit was bloody windy last night. And then there werethe dogs howling g and a few gosts singing but I slept well.
I heard people picking up but I’m not so I alazy morning.
I got up and visited the loo then to the house there were people milling around some trying to.leave others chilling.
I grabbed a coffee and sat on the porch. I saw a free power outlet so plugged in my block.
I them began to catch up on my videos. I had a lot to edit but once done I can upload when I get to grants As I was editing Shoes and Co arrived .they steath camped last night (I wasn’t brave enough)
Okay post office I should have 1 parcel packet.i set off up the road hi I said and handed over my I’d.
The lady found my packet I grabbed a box to take back.
Once back I dropped the stuff in my tent. Okay boxes I had two at the hikerhouse. A food box and Shoes.
The food box I decided to bounce as I still had far too.much food.
Once thst was sorted Nita dropped me to the post office.then to the cafe. When I walked in the usual suspects where here.the girls and Shoes and Co.
I sat at the table with Shoes and Chameleon. Okay I ordered blueberry pie followed by a breakfast burrito.
The pie was amazing and so was the burrito.
After wasfull I headedback to the Toaster House.
I grabbed a beer and then continued with my editing .Later hawkeye and Dr Rob arrived.
We caught up on our disastrous day. And who had the better day lol.
I think I was just lucky .
Later Nita arrived and she’d if anyone fancied going out for a slab of meat. We’ll said yes.
I had a great day with editing so I was a caught up.
So e spent the rest of the day chilling on the porch drinking beer.
At 6.30 Nita arrived and we jumped into the car
On the way to the steak House Nita gave a great talk about the town etc etc.
Once at the restaurant e grabbed seats odered beer and then our steaks I had the Rib Eye not sure how big 18,ozs +/- oh it was so tender mmmm and I woofed the lot.
We popped into the shop.next door as we were asked to bring back beer and a few other things then headed home. On the way back Nita showed is the huge radio telescope. It was here where they filmed Contact with Jodie Foster.
At last we were back there were still plenty of hikers sat on the deck chatting and drinking.
We dropped the beer on the table.but I was done and very full so headed to my tent.
Omg all this food so spent 10 minutes sorting it all out before getting into.my bed.
I woke at 6 and snoozed then got up when it went off again.
I packed my gear snd was ready to go.
Good morning Snail ready to get back to the trail?
Okay I’ll drop you back to the road.
As we were driving down his drive a large herd of Elk were gathered there must have been 50 plus. I thought I had videoed it but seems not.
Once at the road I thanked him so much for his generosity.
Then I waved him goodbye.
I stood by the road it was 6.30 on a Saturday morning and oh so quite .To hitch you need cars and there were none !! I stood there for about 30 minutes.mmm.i best start walking .I hoisted my pack and set off down the highway.no cars…..lol.
About an hr later a motor home slows.i walkover to it It was the couple who I met at the cave dwellings . I get inside thank them.they know where the trail head is as they dropped people off earlier. What a lovely couple.
We chatted about the fire closures,other hikers
And I then i was standing on the trail. I thanked them again and headed out.I was taking the Pie Town Alternitive, and it was hot already . A little way in I met a lady coming the other way.as I chatted to her I realised it was the wife of the man with the Dog. Wow.
I pushed on the trail climbing steeper and steeper. I was struggling and I don’t know why.
After the climb the trail become very enjoyable with great scenery.
I was doing okay but wished I could go faster. I wondered where the boys were and how much further they were I front of me.
I pushed on up dirt roads.
Okay snail atone we will have a brew. (My reward).
At last a perfect spot. I dropped my pack and got out my stove .
Oh a cuppa such a reviver..
Okay snail miles to crush ha ha.
About s mile up this road the trail turns right and just ahead u der a tree was a water cache.omgthank you so somuch Trailangel.
As I was topping up 2 guys stopped for a chat
They were hunters from a local.indian tribe.
They were out to hunt for 2 turkeys. They take the feathers for ther religious dancesznd customs really interesting.
Okay I now have water and 3 mile + climb that’s very helpful.
I chugged up.the hill melting in the sun.
But at the top what amazing g views wow.
And now down. I spent the rest of the afternoon spiralling down and it was shitty loose rock. And I stumbled several times omitting a few swear words.
In the distance I saw another hiker and I began to gain on them.
As I got closer I could see it was a lady. HIYA I said.
She jumped then told me off for making her jump.
This lady is 75 wow.
It was now approaching 6pm and I was tired and began to look for a flat spot.
Maybe a compromise!!
I spied a group of trees and went to look.yup i can get my tent in there.
I droppedmy pack and soon my tent was up and dinner was cooking.
My alarm went off at 5am I snoozed it but let out the air in my bed and slowly began to pack up.
There were still smores coming from the other tents as I went for a wee. Wow what an amazing sunrise.
Hawkeye was just emerging as I dropped my tent.. see you guys I half whispered.and headed for the trail.. it climbed but not to steeply as I wasn’t really awake. But i was still puffing.
At last it began to turn down and fairly steeply.but. omg it was an old burn so most of the trees were down. It was more like a show jumping circuit over and over aghad.a triple jump over abd over and around again as you went across another switch back.and over and under and your heading steeply down got I was knackered and I’d only just began. At last I was down,phew.
I headed alo g the trail just one huge tree in the way. I clambered over and carried on ..the trail headings down. Just ahead was an amazing cairn some one was bored lol.
I stopped to take off my shirt as I was hot from the show jumping.
Just ahead was a tent.the owner appeared exo a kiwi nurse.
I am having a key in she said
I laughed and moved on and up.for the next two miles I was climbing going down climbing going down and then climbing again.as I puffed up.my last hill the boys ( hawkeye and Dr Rob) appeared behind me shortly followed by Exo.god I’m slow.
From here on we played leapfrog until we arrived at our first water source a smelly green pond with cows weeing in it nice. We took one look and decided no.
I moved on first, taking the next Alternate Route it was a nice sandy route so I was able to get some pace.further up i pased an old log cabin.i passed it and arrived at out next water source yet another stinking cow pond.
Crap .just here was Exo
How far is a yard, i asked why
She said that’s where the spring is.
So we walked back to the old Log Cabin. And began searching. At last we found it.It was covered with a heavy iron lid.
I lifted it but it was dry, Fuck
Exo dripped down and dug,but it was stinky too.
We walked back to the pond as Hawkeye and Dr Rob appeared
We all looked at the green water.
The three took off.i stood and gazed at the pond.
Nah and I hoisted my pack and set off after the boys.
I caught them on their break .then fell on behind.We were all low on water and the next was in 5 miles time. Going to be Hot.
I followed the boys down the canyon ,we had a great pace.
At the next break Hawkeye announces Weare off trail and by about 2 miles.oh crap.
Shall we go back I suggested!
We decided to go on ,down the current trail but after 20 minutes we noticed that we were getting further away from the trail.
We had a discussion and decided the best option was to go down the next valley and then bushwack to the trail.
I agreed and we set off then stopped to take a break.
As we sat there I was getting a little stressed .I didn’t think I could do what they wanted to do.
As I know my limitations and I don’t yet have my trail legs or stamina. I pondered and pondered.
Guys I said I can’t do this I’m going yo go back yo that random trailand just follow it.
I havnt got a clue where i am going and yours seems a much better plan but I can’t do it.
Okay snail.wehere you.
We wished each other good luck and I turned and went back the way we had come. Back at the random trail I turned right and said fingers crossed.
Luckily for me it was fair flat as I headeddown and down.throuh canyon after canyon .
At 2 pm I took a break under a tree.bugger i bet the boys are on trail now. Oh well.
Back to the trail all of a sudden 2 partridges or similar flew up scaring the shit out of me.
A little further a wild turkey ran past followedby a second and still I pondered down this mystery trail the hrs ticking by and the sun getting hotter and my water getting lower.
At 3.30 I stopped for another break.Fuck I think I’ve fucked up here…..
Back to the trail and it’s getting later. Then I see footprints in the sand and on my Appin getting closer to highway 12but I an miles from the trail.
I flowing the footprints and then see horses. That’s a good sign.
At last a building with car.
I can’t climb the fence so I take two water bottles and head towards the building.
I knock on the door.
A young lady answers the door.
I apologise to her and ask if she could top up my bottles.
She grabs my bottles.and disappears shouting Mum.
A few minutes later mum appears with my water.
Tells me I’m on private land and trespassing .
I apologise say I’m lost.
She’s not happy and tells me I’m still trespassing..
I again say sorry and ask am I near the highway?
Yes tour about a mile away but its all private land.
I thank her and head back to my pack. Itsnot going we I say to myself.
I pour one bottle into my bladder. Hoist my pack and head down the drive.i passing through another ranch when a rancher appears on his Gator.
Hey you look like you could use a beer!
Omg yes please. I’d love one.
I then said could I get some water and maybe could I pitch my tent in your back yard!!!
I think we can do better than that.
I get into the gator. And we drive to the Ranch house. He invites me in .
“Make yourself at home”
He then disappears and returns with beer and ice. He passes the iced water to me.
Oh that’s so good I top it up then enjoy my ale.
Would you like to take a shower.
I step in the water refreshing my bones and cleaning off the sweat and dirt..
I put on my clean shirt and went back to the kitchen.
Waiting for me was another beer.
What an amazing person.
Okay snail come relax in the lounge I will cook dinner later you can sleep her too.
Really I couldn’t believe what he was saying omg omg Thank you so so much.
I brought me another beer,then announced dinner was ready.
Dinner was so good and tasty.then he told me off for not eating enough.
As we were eating the “Cow Dog” appeared he was huge and stopped baddies and critters from bothering the cattle. They also have sheep and alpacas here too.
I was bloody frozen last night.i ended up putting on another top.brr. must order a new bag.
I made a hot chocolate to warm me before waking back to the trail.
Onwards snail.i pushed on needing to finish the last of the plains. I passed through a gate and headed towards the trees..
Once through the trees I turned right onto the main road (Dirt track) I slogged on S this road began to climb and climb at last it began to flattern I stomped on for about another hour until I heard a engine,I stopped and moved off the road.it was a forest fire tender
I just stepped back onto the road when I heard another engine. This was a truck towing a cattle truck and was shifting.
I pushed on again until I heard more engines again I stood off of the road as a fleet of fire trucks died down the road flowed by numerous pickups loaded with all their gear. As another one approached I flagged it down
Excuse me I asked am I in any Danger?
No sir the fire is out.
Phew okay I said and went back to my walking.
As I progressed down this road the smell of smoke became stronger.
I was then in the burn. As I walked along the heat was fierce even though the fire was out.
A little further tress ere still on fire and lots of trees were still smouldering. Iwas aitgle concerned and so when another fire truck arrived I flagged it down.
He advised me this was black burn or it was controlled to prevent others and what was left was normal. He then advised me not to stop until past it 2miles..wow.
I thanked him and continued on.
Wow it went on and on.now and then I saw crews inside it working.
Eventually I passed it and green reappeared but now and then there were burn spots.
About an hr later I saw a nether fire truck parked up. The driver said HI.
So I asked him about the fires. He said the big one was Sunday and there was one along this bit last week… wow.
I pushed on needing water. It was in 2 miles ahead.
As I pushed on down the road I noticed cattle in the field ahead. That is possibly it. Imade a route towards it following other hikers footprints.at last.
There was a large tank powered by a diesel generator.
I dropped my pack and went to the water. It was warm so I needed to filter it.
I sat in the shade for my break before returning to the trail and that never ending road.
Hour after hour ticked by as the road continued on.
It’s funny you see a cloud of dust long before you hear the vehicle.
And they leave in cloud of dust.
The road now began to climb and climb. Phew its so hot. I need a break I saw a log so headed over snd dumped my pack down.took of my shoes to cool my feet.
As I rested a huge log lorry cane by followed by several trucks
I could have sat here ll daybut I needed miles.
I continued up this road even after my break my feet were still hot.
A white pick up then came the other way. He stopped Nd said would you like some cold water.
God yes.he then asked who was behind me.
I hadn’t a clue. I’m not sure I said.
I’ll go check then i will be back
Would you like a lift to the top of the hill?
Yes please as I was exhausted
I removed my pack and sat down.
10 minutes he returned I put my pack the back and got in.he handed me another water.
We hadn’t gone far when I saw hawkeye and Dr Rob getting g water. The driver stopped and asked if they wanteda lift up.the hill. They both declined.
I was dropped at the top.i thanked him and sat in the shade.
The boys shortly appeared. Iwas amazed that I was only an hour behind them. We set off together but only 1 more mile before we camped
I let the air out of my pad and made a hot chocolate as I packed up.
I was soon on trail and busy crossing the river my third crossing was deep and that certainly woke me up brr .I tried to speed up to warm back up as it was cold morning.
At 6.30 I passed the two boys as they were packing up.Bandaids tent was also here. .
The trail was fairly clear this morning and so I had a good pace. I pased numerous Beaver dams but no sign of anyone bring at home. Again time to cross and again the river looked deep. I headed up stream to find dome where safer. IT was still cold and my fingers were cold even though I was wearing gloves. I was now in meadows and began to follow the cairns iclimbed up a dmsll Hill and then began to come down the other side. The view below was incredible.the size of a football field was packed with logs all sizes crushed together by a flood I guess wow it looked amazing.
I followed the path down and into another meadow. To my surprise it was frosty on this side. I pushed on and then began the fun of more river crossings.
I thought my pace was good and was looking forward to my 9am break.
At last I found a big rock and took a break.the day was now heating up as I followed the trail nice cairns or pink flags. Eventually I came to a huge scree of rock there was a path but it was a little unclear so I checked my app.
FUCK FUCK FUCK IT
Once again I’m off trail and by miles how the he’ll did that happen. I reluctantly turned around and headed back. How did I go wrong I was following the cairns. I passed the place where I took my break.more annoyed I didn’t check when I had my break. FUCK!
it took me an hour to get back to where I went wrong .
Well that’s well marked.okay now back on trail and losing almost 2 hrs.
I pushed on and began to climb once up ihad great views of Snow lake.Wow.i spiralled down and around the edge and emerged up by the picnic area.
Wow great views .I found a picnic bench and dropped my pack.i walked over and got water and as there was a trashcan I could loose my trash result.
I sat here for about an hour before moving off.
Again another road walk before the trail dived off right. It was now a lovely trail I had a small climb and then I emerged in to some fantastic valley’s they reminded me of the Highlands of Scotland. The valley went from one to another then another then another. Okay lunch. I sat in the shade and enjoyed my break
Okay I had one more valley then I came across a cow pound with solar panels. As I had enough wate I passed.
Okay snail where now ?
Oh dear the trail snaked steeply up a hill.
I set off as as I began to climb the wind appeared a vicious wind blowing straight at me Fuck. I chugged up the dude of the hill. Once at the top it was hard to stand because of the wind. I headed off across vast plains that seemed to go on forever . I battled on for several hrs the wind tossing me around like a rag doll. And still the trail snaked on after several hours of this I was exhausted but there was no ehere to hide. It was just exposed. I pushed on passing several inquisitive cows. .
A tree there was a tree ahead.
I walked up to it and took off my packed.i stood there thi King fir several minutes before deciding it wasn’t good enough.
I hoisted my pack again and walked back to the trail and forward there were more trees in the distance fingers crossed.
The wind was still relentless but the trees were getting closer and closer. At last I walked off trail and towards them .this was perfect.i soon had my tent up and was relaxing with a hot cup of tea.