March 31, 2021
The trail was mostly a dirt road walk today, at least for the first 10 miles. We didn’t even need to take a break until the water source at 376.2. We passed Bass in his tent a few miles out and then he passed us along the trail a few miles after that. We found him resting at the water source and chatted for a bit before he hiked on. He’s doing 30’s so we probably won’t see him much after this stretch, but the other hikers we know should be coming up behind us soon, so that will be nice. Familiar faces on trail are always nice.
More dirt road walking after that, and then the trail went to the left. Scree immediately for a bit, but mostly it was clear. Such a nice change. I hope it’s like this all the way to Utah, lol.
We went 5 miles to the next water source, which wasn’t great but better than many we’ve used, so we took a break there. Then we went just 2.5 miles or so more in the heat of the day before we found ourselves within range of a cell tower. We found a single tree that provided a bit of shade and sat down to do some “phone” chores while we had service. We’re not sure we can push into Pine by Sunday, so Ghosthiker had been talking to a trail angel about putting us up instead of staying at the AirBnB we’d already booked. However, during our break, we learned that if we cancelled our AirBnB, we’d only get half our money back. So we ended up keeping our reservation and cancelling with the trail angel, thanking them profusely for being willing to help us. Looks like we’re pushing into Pine afterall.
While Ghosthiker dealt with that mess, I needed to give Mom directions for mailing my next packages to Mormon Lake and Flagstaff. At Roosevelt, my box had literally arrived that morning. I’d rather not cut it that close again. (⊙﹏☉)
We pressed on and came to the actual water source, Sycamore Creek, which proved to be a beautifully flowing stream with nice sandy spots in the shade to sit and take a break. There, we found Bass! He had been there for about 2 hours, he said, and we were surprised to see him. Apparently, he had a fall and then later jarred his ankle and was just having a rough time of it, so he took a long break and soaked his feet in the stream. Good for him. I really hope he doesn’t end up aggravating his foot injury.
Unfortunately, we had just taken a break and it was already 4:30pm so we didn’t really need a long break even though it was a beautiful spot. But we couldn’t resist washing our feet and legs as well as some dirty socks and stuff. It was lovely and I felt very refreshed getting back on trail, which isn’t normal so late in the day. I felt like I could have gone another 5 miles, but in truth it was all in my head. We were both very tired, but we pushed on past AZ Highway 87 and camped at mile 387.3, just far enough away from the highway that the noise was a pleasant lull instead of an irritating racket. It was nice and flat and just a little breezy. Perfect.