Sunday, May 5, 2024

Lordsberg to Silver City

We hiked the road walk out of Lordsberg after dinner. It was still hot but we met a guy cycling across the country. He didn’t even have panniers  and was just staying at hotels and washing his clothes out in the sink each night. He still had around 100 miles to go before his pre booked hotel. That would be a cool future adventure!

Once we got off the road and onto real trail we had to go at least far enough to get past some privately owned land and then we just cowboy camped in a clear spot. 

The next morning we started hiking with our headlamps before sunrise. About a mile and a half up the trail we saw Skeeter cowboy camping in the perfect spot. When it’s dark and we find a spot we always think we need to take it because we don’t know what will be available ahead but we are learning that there is always another spot ahead. Today was to be a gruelling exposed  day, I’m thankful that we night hiked part of it and got rid of another part early in the morning. But by 8am I was already trying to avoid the sun! 

We managed to find good shade at a water tank where there were bees. While we were there Skip arrived and handed us a cookie to celebrate mile one hundred that was coming up. He continued on as did Happy Six and D20 to the next water source where we had a bit of a break. Then a great thing happened! We hiked into the trees! It was magical! We found a big one and set up in the shade for the afternoon. I took a nap! It was perfect! Then it was time to hike again. We came to a road crossing and found Skip, Skeeter, D20 and Happy Six and decided to stop for dinner. A trail Angel had dropped off water and a pail full of pop tarts! Thank you!

 While eating we met Free Will and Packrunner who are hiking the CDT for their honeymoon. Free Will is also on his triple Crown attempt and has hiked the AT twice! After dinner we put in  few more miles and then cowboy camped along the trail. 

The next morning we were up early again to avoid the heat and by lunchtime we were up over 8000ft and in the trees! It was perfect! There was a side trail leading up to a crystal throne but we didn’t take it. We would later learn it had been worth the side trip. 

We took breaks with Skeeter,Skip, Happy Six and D20 in the afternoon and met Chopsticks and Murphy. We briefly saw Free Will and Packrunner when they passed us.  We found our first natural water source! Just imagine what it would have been like for those who hiked this trail before the water caches! The water was great! Most of the rest of the hikers stayed near that water source but a few of us continued on taking advantage of the cooler evening to hike. We ended up leapfrogging Skeeter as he had set up in the perfect spot to see the sunset. We hiked until dark and cowboy camped close to the trail. 
We were up early again, trying to put the miles in before the heat. It turned out to be the perfect day and we actually hiked by some big redwoods (my favourite trees).

 We also saw our first pond on this trail, the fact that there was a very badly smelling dead cow nearby didn’t stop us from taking a few pics.  We were able to take water from natural sources all day (although we did guzzle some water and top up from bottles a trail Angel had left. Thank you! 

We hiked down to Saddle Rock Reparian Area and stopped for a break  near the trickle of water we called a waterfall. Skeeter and Skip were already there when we arrived and shortly after D20 and Happy Six joined us. We got up and began the dirt road walk that would lead to a long highway road walk. 

The dirt road was exposed but was very scenic and there were lots of cows. The big ones seemed afraid of us and the little ones were all curious and got close before scampering away.

 By the time we arrived at the highway road walk we were already looking for the non-existent shade. We stopped several times beside bushes along the highway just to give ourselves some reprieve from the sun. Skeeter caught up and passed us and then we joined him in another shady spot to make dinner. 

Another hiker named Little Bird stopped to talk to us for a few minutes before hiking on.  Our goal was to get within six miles of town and so we continued hiking using our headlamps so that the oncoming cars would see us. Finally we were within reach of town and found a sketchy spot along the highway to stop for the night. As soon as we were set up Skeeter noticed there was a mouse nearby and TBD was making up a story about an aggressive dog we could hear barking from somewhere nearby. 

Surprisingly, we slept good there,TBD kept sliding down the hill a bit because we weren’t perfectly flat.  We packed up just in time for the nearby dog to start barking again. Skeeter raced to town, I went at my normally slow pace and TBD stayed behind me. There was cell reception so while she was busy sending voice messages I called Michael. Finally we made it town. Our first stop was Tranquil Buzz Coffee House. It was a vey cute looking place with an outdoor garden and water fountain. The coffee was great but they didn’t have any vegan options so  our next stop was breakfast at Roxy’s. The service was great and another customer there paid for our meals! Thank you! 

Next was a trip to an outdoor market

Where everyone was super friendly and then on our way to the post office we met Tuba and Ryan. 

We exchanged numbers so we could let them know where we are all going to meet for a drink. We ended up having a nice night at the local brewery (Little Toad Creek Brewery) and most of the hikers we have been leapfrogging the past few days were with us! Tim (CDT driver/trail Angel/hiker) joined us and gave us rides saving us walking a couple miles! Thank you!

 Back at the hotel everyone in my room crashed but in

Day 5: 7.1 miles/11.4km 

Day 6: 19.9 miles/32km

Day 7: 18.8 miles/30.2km

Day 8: 24.2 miles/38.9km

Day 9: 6.9 miles/11.1km

“To walk in nature is to witness a thousand miracles.” Mary Davis

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