Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Day 139: Labor Day Laborings

September 6: I woke and spent much of the morning repacking my food into Ziplocks before packing up my backpack. Afterward, I headed to the front desk where I picked up a voucher for a meal across the street at a restaurant called 1889 where I picked up a sausage burrito and cinnamon roll. Normally, the hotel would offer a complementary breakfast at their restaurant, but their own restaurant was closed since it was Labor Day, so vouchers for the restaurant across the street were being handed out instead.

Veering off the highway near MacDonald Pass onto this gravel road.

After that, I gave Barb a call about a ride back to the trail. She's the trail angel I met yesterday who was dropping Just Awesome off back on the trail. I got her voice mail and left a message, but after about an hour of waiting for a callback, I finally gave up and checked out of the motel, preparing the hitchhike the old-fashioned way.

The street in front of the 1889 restaurant was pretty busy and heading in the correct direction, so that was my destination. But as I was walking out to it, Barb called me back and said there was a guy named Bob who could pick me up in about 15 minutes and give me a ride to the trail. Awesome!

I had already checked out of my motel room and with nowhere else better to go, I said I'd wait for him at a table outside the 1889 restaurant where he picked me up.

He dropped me off back on MacDonald Pass, and I started hiking by around 9:30am. It was a bit later than I had initially hoped, however, so I decided I would hike rather late. The morning started off with super smoky skies and a stiff wind. I followed the route a short distance downhill along the highway before veering off onto a gravel road where the trail picked up a lot of elevation.

The rest of the day, the trail varied between gravel roads and real trail. Neither of them were busy with people or vehicles, and I only passed a couple of ATVs once early in the afternoon. Other than that, I had the trail entirely to myself.

At the tops of exposed hills, the winds were especially strong!
In the afternoon, the strong winds blew the smoke away which was nice, leaving me with relatively clear, blue skies. The wind stayed annoying strong, however, especially at the highest and most exposed elevations.

My goal for the day was to reach a water source about 20 miles away, but when I got near it, I saw it surrounded with cattle. It was about 7:30pm, however, and although I had hoped to hike another half hour (at a minimum), I figured I may as well stop here. I set up camp nearby among some trees to help break the wind, far enough away from the cattle hoping that they wouldn't bother me during the night. And, if I were lucky, they'd have moved somewhere else to eat greener grass and wouldn't get in my way when I picked up water in the morning. I just didn't want to deal with them if I didn't have to. *fingers crossed* =)

Thus ended my day of laboring on Labor Day. There are no holidays on the trail. Every day is a work day!

This old railroad trestle doesn't look very safe to use anymore! I hadn't even realized I'd been following an old railroad bed for a bit until I saw this dilapidated trestle next to the trail.

The funny part about this sign.... It seemed like I saw this same sign over again over again for a couple of hours. You get to the end of the 1.5 miles, then there would be an identical sign warning the same thing for the next 1.5 miles. And again, and again....

An old, abandoned mine and some of its leftover equipment.

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