Road Hard

In the morning while passing a vaporous lake

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the grass along the trail has dew, and in places even frost. This does not help my wet shoe situation.
The path moves on dirt road through aspen forest.

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For the rest of the day we stay on dirt road, gravel road, road-to-trail, some paved road, and gravel road, with a bit of pathway connecting it all. Elevation is in the 9000s, a hot day with clouds attempting to become thunder-clouds and start the monsoon season.

The road goes past a wide valley of ranches and grassy hills.

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We pass broad-leaf mountain sagebrush. Yes!

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We climb through hills, with stands of pine trees not affected by beetle kill yet.

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In mid-afternoon I meet an older couple who live full-time in their van, enjoying a nomadic lifestyle.

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Solar panels on the roof keep the Pepsi they offer me delightfully cold. They invite me to sit at their canopy “porch” and visit a while.

When hearing that I live near Socorro they mention staying at the Wal-Mart parking lot in that city when they go by on way to Arizona. “There’s always something¬† going on in that lot. Last time some woman tried to run off with a full shopping cart, with security giving chase.”
I put in a long day of road miles, hoping to get close enough to take advantage of a cabin the next night, but it still may not be in range for tomorrow’ s hike.¬† My feet stayed wonderfully dry all day after the first wet shoes. Hope the long road miles do not cause them to ache in the morning.

Day 15. 7/2/2014. Wednesday
Start past Cochetopa “Bridge”, mile 1000, elevation 9806
End 2 miles past Lujan Trailhead, mile 1027, elevation 10345

Author: Jim, Sagebrush

Jim (trail-name Sagebrush) codes audio software for Windows, Linux, Android, and embedded systems. When not working at sagebrush.com, he enjoys backpacking, which this blog is about.