Daily Miles: 3
Total Miles: 3
Well, after what felt like a whirlwind of tasks, and to-do lists, we are back on a trail and back into the lifestyle that we love. We have been looking forward to hiking the MRT, hiking with our friend, Mace, and just seeing a new part of Arizona.
We were lucky to have Mace’s cousin, Judy, drive us from the PHX area up to the trailhead outside of Cottonwood. It was really generous of her, since it was over a three hour drive each way!
We had heard that the last few miles of the road to the trailhead might not be passable unless with a 4WD vehicle, but still we were able to make it the whole way! We were thankful not to have the extra few miles of walking, since we were getting to the trailhead around 4:30pm.
We hadn’t actually planned to start the hike until tomorrow, but since we still had a few hours of daylight when we got to the trailhead, we decided to start walking. It had been grey all day and we had sporadic rain on the drive up. We were hopeful that the rain would miss us, but within a mile of the trailhead, we had already put on our rain gear. We realized that this was probably the first time in all our miles of hiking in Arizona that we had walked through legitimate rain. We have had a few drops of rain over the years, but nothing to ever really get us wet. We suppose that we were finally due.
Most of the hiking was climbing up from a river valley onto a mesa. We were on an actual trail that was in good shape…it even had some switchbacks! It was a pretty gradual climb and the views behind us were awesome. The deep red bluffs with a wide green river canyon was really cool.
We hadn’t expected to be able to hang in our hammocks tonight, as the map in this area looked pretty barren. But, once we got up onto the mesa, there were a lot of juniper trees. We were so excited, since we didn’t have high hopes for a good night of sleep.
We are all feeling the usual “first day on the trail discombobulation.” Tasks take longer as we haven’t gotten used to things yet…we haven’t gotten into our “setting up camp” rythym yet…we haven’t gotten a system of packing our backpacks…we’re dealing with new gear. Surely things will sort themselves out over the next few days, but it’s funny how the beginning of each trail feels the same.