Daily Miles: 22
Total Miles: 1550
Last night was quite warm and comfortable. At some point in the night, we were woken up by the wind…it was blowing good, but seemed to just be in the tops of the trees and not actually blowing on us.
We woke up extra early and were happy that the temperature was so mild. It made for really pleasant walking. It was nice to see the sky turn from stars to a colorful sunrise as we continued our walk along the rim of the mesa.
We eventually made our way down a really nice switchbacked trail to the Rio Chama. The water was too dirty to drink, but we did stop to do laundry there. We also got water from a woman parked near the river so we could relax for awhile at the river.
The woman we met was getting her pack ready for a six day vision quest she was heading out on in the mountains. The idea is that she will fast – consuming only water – for six days, while contemplating her life. Maybe she will have an epiphany while she’s out there.
It looked like she was carrying a very heavy load. Even though she was not carrying any food, she had a very large backpack. She had two gallons of water in her pack and then she was carrying four gallons of water in her hands. To us it looked quite challenging.
After our break, we headed to a piped spring to fill up our water bottles. The water was collecting in a metal tub just off the trail. When we got to the tub, we heard some kind of rattle, but it didn’t sound like a rattlesnake, and we didn’t see anything, so we just figured it was an insect making the noise. After a few minutes, SweetPea saw the tail end of a snake slithering into its hole just a few feet from where we were standing. The tail didn’t look like it had a rattle on it, so we’re not sure what kind of snake it was. In any case, we got our water and headed out of there.
We continued on the trail and shortly ran into the vision quest woman. It seemed her boots were falling apart…the sole was literally splitting from her boot. Both boots looked like they were having issues. But she had a spare pair of boots hanging from her pack, so it seemed like she would be ok.
We ended up having multiple great water sources during the day. We were pretty thankful, since it was quite warm today. And we had a good climb of about 2,000 feet, so it was nice to be able to drink as much water as we wanted.
We are camped about a quarter mile from a state highway, but luckily it seems to be a very lightly used road. It seems like it will be another mild and calm night.