Day 2: Camping with Cows

16 March 2022
AZT Mile 15 to 39
(24 miles).

After yesterday’s big climb, today was supposed to be easy. And the morning was indeed delightful, but the afternoon was a bit tough for me emotionally.

I left before Butterfingers this morning and hiked solo for a while, seeing turkeys, deer, a windmill, and Parker Lake.

Morning glow
Fattest turkey I’ve ever seen
Nice windmill, empty tank!
Parker Lake

Butterfingers leapfrogged me at Parker Canyon, our nicest water source so far.

A flowing stream!
Pointleaf manzanita

The next water source wasn’t so nice, so we skipped it for an only-slightly-less-disgusting fetid pool of stagnant water in the creek bed nearby.

This was the one we skipped!

We hiked solo for a while and my thoughts turned a bit dark. What am I doing out here? Why are mornings so nice and afternoons so hard? It’s hot! And windy! My knee hurts! Why do I think I can be a thru-hiker? I miss my wife.

Pretty meadows, sad thoughts

And then I caught up with Butterfingers again. It was nice to have someone I could share my thoughts with. It really helped.

Round golden hills as we descend

We planned to call it a day at a water source after 22 miles of hiking. But the area was in the heart of a cattle ranch. There was nothing but poop all around!

Who left all this poop here?!?
It wasn’t me!

So we kept hiking. And it kept getting darker. And still…. Poop!

After almost 2 miles we eventually found a place with less poop that worked out okay, but it was definitely hard, rocky, and exposed.

Fortunately the strong winds of the day quieted down as we ate dinner under the full moon and the cows mooed in the distance.

Dinnertime moon

Self-Doubt
My head is a trap
Unlocked only by the gift
Of a third person

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Enjoying your adventures. As someone who grapples with purpose while out on the trail, I can attest that you are not alone in this. I hope you enjoy the rest of your adventure.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. JimmyJam says:

      Thanks Derek!

      Like

  2. Diny says:

    Jimmy jam you cane do this so cool and nice to follow your hiking journal there are ups and downs but just enjoy the beautiful trail love the pictures by you’re hiking journal.I hope you have a great time I follow your hiking trip so nice good luck.

    Liked by 1 person

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