5/6/15, Day 12, Tarp
Mile 60.7 next to Gila to Dipping Vat Campground

17.4, 228.4 Trip Miles
Sunny, 70’s
6:38to 5:00 pm54 Gila Crossings, 201 Final Total

Critter Count
5 Lizards
1 Squirrels

98 Lizards

10 Deer

9 Horny Roads

5 Jack Rabbit

4 Squirrels

4 Snakes

3 Cotton Tail Rabbits

3 Chipmunks

2 Toads

1 Mouse

1 Skunk

I would say I slept well compared to most nights out here. It was another dewy morning which meant I had another yard sale at lunch.

Speaking of lunch I had a Northern Flicker living above me. He sat with his head sticking out of his hole. What was even cooler was the Ruby-throated Hummingbird that kept coming to check me out. My orange shirt and visor along with me red bandana caught his eye. At one point he hovered two feet in front of my face. There was no chance to grab the camera but I did it a 2 second clip the next time he came.

Gila River

Slow flowing Gila River

Today was filled with 54 more crossings of the Gila and tons of sand and rocks. I had so much fun I went the wrong way up the wrong canyon. I even looked at my app and it told me I was off course but no matter, I was smarter. I wasn’t and had to backtrack. 

The result was 2w got in front of me. This was a good thing as when we got to Snow Lake and the campground here he decided to stay. I convinced myself to stay as well. It was only 4:45 pm when we got here. My gut would have had me push on as it was too early to stop. 

Trees in the Gila

Forest inside the Gila River basin

The idea of chilling out when hiking is hard. My usual philosophy is “Sun’s up, you walk!”  I can feel myself getting into hiker beast mode. If you noticed I haven’t mentioned my feet at all in a while. The only two parts that hurt are my right shoulder and my hips at night. You’d think with a 2.5″ thick NeoAir Thermarest my hips would be in heaven. Not the case. 

My fingernails have dirt under them almost 24/7. My hair is nasty and my scalp is getting dry already. Even though I shake, like a lot I keep peeing down my leg. So now I look and smell like a homeless person. My shirt is getting ripe. I noticed it in the morning when I put it on. 

Flowers, Lupin


I’ll be honest, I was over the Gila after the first day. I’m glad to be out of it. My feet will be dry but so will the landscape. So now you get to listen to me bitch about having to carry large heavy amounts of water. 

My bird total is up to 31. 

Despite what I said above I would miss the Gila.  It had it’s challenges like any other section of the hike, but it was beautiful all the same.  

I did have a hard time not moving on this day.  I knew 2w was only hiking New Mexico and that I was much faster than him but for once I held back to enjoy the time available with him.  When he was gone I could hike faster if I choose.  

Back to Day 11, Forward to Day 13


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Get out there!

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