Day 6 Lordsburg to 101 (16.4)
Gah town and interwebs! There are still lots of emails and writing and messages to respond to so I spend the morning sorting all that.
I spend too long and get scared everytime I look outside and see how hot and bright it looks.
Finally out just after 10 and commence a road walk out of Lordsburg. Hot. Bitumen. Glass. Rubbish. Dogs barking. Hot.
Finally the trail veers off under a barbed wire fence and into another great wide deadly desert. I think this is the last of the great wides for a while.
It’s really hot. And there is no shade. The plants are tiny and are not helpful at all. I’m getting really hot and kicking myself for such a late start. I imagine that the trail is like a mario game and when I hit a sign as I go by cold cans of soda will fly out. Mmm cold. Mmm liquid.
It’s getting stupid hot. I keep looking at my watch and it is creeping up and up. 34, 36, 38.
I finally see what might be a tree off trail. I’m not supposed to veer off the trail in this section as the trail only owns 10ft either side of the path, but I’m sweating too much and don’t have enough water for this heat. I bunker down in the dappled shade and wait.
I’m still waiting. How is it 330pm and the temperature still climbing??? 38.8
I’m still sweating just sitting here. I take stock of my water situation and I have about 1.2L for 6 miles. Normally this would be plenty but I am feeling too hot, my heart is beating too much because of it and there is no shade in sight.
My mileage calculations change over and over for the day as I won’t be hiking soon. C’mon clouds!
I watch whirly whirlys form in the distance, listen to flies and bees buzz around me. I wish I could nap but there’s only room for cross legged sitting. I daydream about cold drinks and iceblocks and swimming pools.
I can still see Lordsburg in the distance! Gah of the hwy was closer I would totally hitch in for a cold drink then hitch back out.
Finally I’ve had enough and decide to brave it. I ration my water – one sip every 15 minutes. It’s dizzy hot. I try not to panic because that will only make it worse so I just stare at guthook (hiking app with maps, water sources, elevation) and will the miles to tick down. I read and re-read the water report. There is a possibility of water in 2 miles, amd another source half a mile after that. Please let there be water at the first one!!!
The trail finally leaves the great wide flatness and starts to meaner into some hills. The climb is a good distraction and there’s even trees here! Treeees!!! Then somehow I’m at the water. The tank is dry. But there is another rusted covered tank and I lift it to find…. water!!! Manky water with floaters but I don’t care. I filter a litre and add some electrolytes and sit and sip slowly. I know it won’t be good for me to guzzle, plus I am drained of all energy to contemplate guzzling. As I’m sitting on the edge of the tank a cow wanders up and stares at me accusingly. I try to show her where I got my water from but she doesn’t understand. I also try to explain there is another water source in half a mile but she just stares at me then wanders off to hide under an inadequate tree. Poor cow.
I take my manky litre and march on to the next better water source. All her cow friends got the memo and they are guzzling water from the tank. There are about 50 cows and I can’t get close. Crap!!! Water report says great water at a windmill in another mile. So I march on again.
I get to the windmill and there is nothing. Not a drop. I search for a tap or some magic button and there is none. Nooooo. The water report is usually very reliable. I’m so thirsty I could cry but I have no tears.
So…the next water is in 3 miles. I have no choice but to keep on. At least the sun is setting now and it’s much cooler. I pass the 100 mile mark. I have no energy for proper celebration, but take my obligatory selfie.
I last about a mile and call it a night. My mileage is pitiful but I had no choice with the heat. I have about 100ml left of my litre so I take one sip and leave the rest for morning. Crossing fingers, toes and praying to the water gods overnight.
I reach down to my pack to press my SPOT to notify that I’ve made it to camp and it’s not there! The clip and the velcro it should be attached to are there, but no SPOT. Crap crap crapola. It must have come loose on one of the scuttles under barbed wire fences. Poo. I’ll have to sort out another when I have phone reception- this trail is too sparsely populated for me to feel safe without it.
Blergh. Pooey day. But now I’m on an actual trail with actual trees so yay! 2 miles in the morning till happiness.