Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Day 136: Section Hikers on the Trail!

September 3: This morning didn't seem as cold as yesterday, and I was up and moving considerably earlier this time around. A few minutes after 7:00am, I was on the trail and hiking!

A few hours later, while walking across a high ridge, I checked for a cell phone signal and was able to download a new set of Azena-Ley maps. The emptiness in my life that was a lack of topo maps had finally been filled, and I was glad that I only had to hike for a few hours without them.

Along this ridge, I was able to get a cell phone signal strong enough that let me download topo maps of the area. I was no longer hiking naked and blind! *whew*

In the afternoon, I ran into my first hiker on the trail in nearly two weeks. He had started as a south-bounder but later turned it into a section hike after a couple of injuries and weather-related issues. We were heading in opposite directions, and he was an older gentleman in his 60s. I'd mention his thick, gray beard, but I was guilty of the same thing so I'm not sure that helps with the description. =)

We wound up sitting around on the trail and chatting for an hour. I think both of us were starved for company! He was planning to finish this year's hiking in Butte. "Almost done!" I told him, a little envious. Actually, I was almost done myself--just a few more weeks if all went well--but it still seemed like a long way off.

Late in the afternoon, I finally reached a water source. The first of three that were relatively close to each other on the trail. I filled up a bit at the first one before topping up a lot at the last one. The one in the middle I skipped. Not just because I didn't need it, but also because a large herd of cattle were guarding it. It wasn't worth the fight.

I hadn't drank as much water as I figured I would, though, and arrived with plenty of water still on my back. Temperatures were much more moderate than I had been expecting. Perhaps the higher altitudes and plenty of shade had an effect. =) 

Beautiful, clear water! =)

Late in the day, I passed another hiker who had already set up camp. He introduced himself as Hit and Miss and he had started the hiking season with the intention of section hiking the PCT, but wound up bailing on that idea because the Dixie Fire had burned about 70 miles of the trail and the smoke was horrendously bad. So he quit the PCT and moved over to the CDT to use up the food he had already prepared for himself for the PCT. He lived nearby as well, so it was easy for him to access.

I only stopped to chat with him for about 15 minutes before continuing onward, wanting to get in a bit more mileage before calling it quits for the night. I already lost about an hour of hiking time chatting with the first section hiker on the trail--who was to know I'd run into a second one later?!

I finally set up camp fairly late in the day, near 7:30pm. 'Twas a good day of hiking!

These cattle guarded the second of three water sources late in the day. I decided to skip it!

1 comment:

Bon Echo said...

Do you mean Avenza? It's a great app! Sad to read that you only have a couple weeks left on the trail. Seems like I've been reading your CDT trail posts for years