Hello Desert My Old Friend

Day 49: June 11, 2019

Destination: Great Divide Alternate Mile 111.7

Today’s Miles: 28.3

Start Location: Great Divide Alternate Mile 83.4 (Del Norte)

Trip Miles: 776.2

The two guys working on the gas pipeline left the hostel early and quiet as ghosts this morning. I caught up on journaling and chatted a bit, and then headed over to the post office at 9.

The lady working there was super nice. We couldn’t find a box that would fit my snowshoes, so she was trying to help me use two boxes and kind of frankenstein them together. It wasn’t going well, so I ran back to a liquor store a few doors down to see if they had any boxes. I was in luck! They had just gotten a new computer and they let me have the monitor box.

I wasn’t convinced it was long enough, so I went across the street to check for boxes at a florist. No dice. I went back to the post office and, lucky me, the box I had was just big enough for both snowshoes! I mailed them to Salida, which is where all of my snow tools are headed.

After that errand, I continued my walk out of town. I crossed over a river and followed a dirt road out by a tiny airstrip. A helicopter was taking off as I sauntered by. I felt like I was in New Mexico again; the terrain was more like the desert. As I got further along, small desert mountains filled the backdrop and came nearer.

I saw a small flash of light up ahead and realized it was sunlight reflecting off of the back of Blasphemy’s pack. The trail made a giant S-curve here and I decided to go cross country to cut out the turns, and also because I got to scramble over a large hill and find my way down to the other side. On that scramble, I caught up with Blasphemy and enjoyed trying to work my way up and over the hill to pop out in front of, or near, Blasphemy. I felt a little like a spy following someone and quite enjoyed the game!

Blasphemy and I walked together for the rest of the afternoon. We went to a rock formation called “Hellgate,” but it was a bit of an anticlimax. We both stopped to get water at one point and I caught two ticks crawling up my shoes! Yuck! I hate ticks! It’s been cold and bug free for so long that I forgot I would eventually have to deal with them. I had another tick crawling on my hand at camp.

It was a long day. I was grateful for the great weather and the hiking company. We found a good stealth spot, so all that is left for me to do really is fall asleep, which I will do fast!

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