6/5/15, Day 42
M1416.9 to McCarty Canyon Road, 7876′
Tent – Nights Spent Alone: 7
26, 786.3 Trip Miles
Mostly Cloudy – Breezy
Day’s of Snow: 7 – Day’s of Rain: 12
# of Zero days: 5
6:57 am to 6:30 pm
Gila Crossings Final Total: 221
Tick Count: 4 (3 more crawling on me)
3 Prairie Dogs
2 Cotton Tails
1 Jack Rabbit
116 Wild Horses
37 Cotton Tail Rabbits
22 Horny Roads
19 Prairie Dogs
14 Jack Rabbit***
12 Ground Squirrels
2 Rattle Snakes
*174 from car, **3 from car, ***1 from car, ****1 from car
My ass stinks! No really, I have the worst gas. Rafiki makes a point to always be up wind. I do my best to be down wind. Unfortunately for me I’m in my tent currently and I’m hot boxing the hell out of myself. It’s been like this since day 13. When your own farts gross you out you know it’s bad.
Today we walked on the same road for 21.7 of the 26. BORING! No shade once again. We had lunch under a bridge just to find shade. The light colored road reflected the sun’s bright rays straining my eyes throughout the day.
The highlight of the day was seeing eight new birds for the trip:
Northern Rough-wing Swallow -NEW 78
Cliff Swallow -NEW? 79
Song Sparrow -80
Yellow Warbler -81
Cinnamon Teal -NEW 82
American Wigeon -83 m/f
Greater Sage Grouse -NEW 84
Tree Swallow -85
We also heard a Sora which is a small marsh bird that is very secretive. Their best seen at dusk but we were too early. Even with both of us using the binoculars to scan the marsh around the beaver pond in front of us we couldn’t find it. It would have been a great find.
Tomorrow we should be in the trees again. I got service on my phone and got word the last 11 miles to Battle Pass will be on snow. No word on how much or how deep.
To get back to the boring road walk I would like to try and explain what goes through my mind on a day like this. I went to bed knowing I would get up and start walking the same road as the day before. Not only that I knew I’d be on it all day. That alone makes it hard to be excited about the idea.
On a road like this, with open rolling terrain and no trees to speak of you see the same shit for hours at a time. The scenery changes so slowly you start not to even look at it. It’s not until a deer, rabbit or pronghorn makes movement that your pulled from your walking day dream.
The surface is hard which beats up the feet causing hot spots and sore joints. The sun reflects off the dirt, hurting your eyes. All you can think about is shade, soft single track and changing scenery.
By mile 20 you just want to be done. The idea of 10 or even 5 more miles of the same boring road just breaks your soul. I stopped at 6:30 tonight out of lack of not wanting to walk more miles on the same road.
That said it’s still beautiful in its own right. We saw tons of wild flowers we haven’t seen up to now along with some small willows. The rolling hills hold a beauty but at times is need more.
I can’t say much about this day. I shut off my brain and just walked. Well I didn’t shut it off really as I did a ton of thinking but I blocked out the world around me the best I could. Finding the shade at lunch was heaven, though I don’t think the Swallows were happy with it though.
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