May 21, 2017: Hiked Miles 604.4 to 623.6 (19.2 total)
Today was basically hell on earth. Being sick is not fun. Being sick and having to walk 20 miles in the hot desert, up and down mountains is not any more fun. Today was definitely a test of will power for me.
I had another horrible night, hot, cold, everything hurting, little sleep. I woke up at 6:45 and was exhausted. I couldn’t believe it was that late, but I did not want to move. Colton agreed we should try to sleep a little longer so we slept til about 8:30. I felt like I had wasted so much of the day sleeping in so late. I didn’t feel much better, but we had to start hiking at some point. We slowly got moving and packed up. I forced myself to eat one of Colton’s pop-tarts, the only thing we have without much protein or fiber, so hopefully the easiest thing we have to digest, and we finally got out of camp around 9:45. Of course we had missed the cool part of the morning, so starting off was rough. I hardly thought of anything all day besides putting one foot in front of another. I told myself I would get there eventually, no matter how long it took, and didn’t stop until I absolutely had to.
About 4.5 miles into the day we stopped to fill up water because this was the last reliable water for the next 35 miles. That’s never a comforting thought. We had heard there could be a couple water caches along the way, but that they’re not regularly maintained, so we couldn’t rely on them. We chugged as much water as we could there.
We kept hiking, fully loaded down to our dismay. We passed this cute little picnic area I really wanted to lay down in.
These things pop up every so often on the trail. You just write your name and the date you were there in it. It helps to see where your friends are at along the way. Oh I forgot to mention, we both have trail names. Zebra stuck with me unfortunately. My tan lines have only got worse now that I’ve been hiking in shorts with my knee braces on most days. And Colton is now Skittles. I’m sure you can guess why. So this is how we sign the registers usually.
We passed this weird squirrel that seriously could have been a statue. He didn’t move until we were right next to him.
We then wound our way out of the trees and back down to the desert. We made it to our lunch spot and were ecstatic to see that there was in fact a water cache there!
I couldn’t have been happier. Well I might have been happier if I hadn’t carried all that extra water all day, but this was still an awesone surprise. Unfortunately there was zero shade there. We used our umbrellas to eat lunch under and got up not long after to push on to get out of the sun. We only walked another hundred yards or so when we saw this beauty:
Colton grabbed a Dr. Pepper to save for dinner and some candy and we both took an orange. People are just so cool to do this kind of stuff for random hikers. I don’t think I’ll ever get over this kind of generosity. Colton asked me if I wanted a beer. I don’t think he understands this whole I-feel-like-I’m-dying-thing very well. I just shook my head and laughed.
The clouds crept in front of the sun and provided a little shade and relief.
We also hit 1000 km. Sounds a lot better than 600-somethin.
It was a little windy, the dirt was rock hard so we could barely get our stakes in the ground, and there were some motorcycle tracks running through it, but it was flat and good enough for today. Colton cooked dinner and I decided to pass on it and just eat my orange. I don’t need any more nights like the last two and I think my body just needs some rest from working.
Tomorrow is a new day. All we hope for is more water and less achey stomachs.