Day 13 - dirt roads and wind (26.5 miles)
May 22, 2021
Miles: 26.5 miles
Best night sleep I’ve had on trail. I even slept through my alarm going off at 5am. I wanted an early as start possible because I knew I had a long road walk so assumed I wouldn’t have any shade. I was expecting a paved road to walk all the way to Pie Town but it was all on dirt/gravel roads. Plus, I got a lot of shade in the morning and the wind kept temperatures down.
The first mile was on a nice dirt road then turned very rocky for 10 miles where I stopped for my morning break at a picnic area. While there I had a fire forest ranger stop by and asked if I had seen any smoke while hiking. I said no and he was gone. Later on in the day another ranger asked me as well.
After my break I found the water cache and filled up to get me to my next water source.
It was a long uphill on gravel road, up to 9700ft. Then it was all downhill to Davila Ranch.
I finally took my long midday break at 12:30pm where I had put in 18.5 miles. Then by 2pm I was off the last 8 miles to the ranch. I had about 3 miles to my next water source but when I got there I didn’t like it and knew I had enough to get to camp.
The last 5 miles of the day was probably the hardest. I was on the desert floor and there were 35mph winds with gusts up to 50mph at times. I was getting blown around everywhere and the dust was awful. Luckily the wind was coming from my back so I didn’t have to worry about dust getting into my eyes. Also, had several bulls to pass on the road and one of them looked like it was going to charge at me.
I made it to Davila Ranch by 4:15pm. I was so glad to be out of the wind. I went straight to the hiker hangout which has everything. Fridge, shower, washer, toilet, stove, food, trash cans, it has it all. I was so excited that there was hot water so I took a nice hot shower.
After taking a shower I started to make my dinner when another hiker showed up. I was surprised someone did as I saw no one today and the one I camped near last night was a very slower hiker. This guy was someone I met back in Silver City. After talking with him I found out 2 of his hiking partners got sick as well. He left his hiker partners as he really wanted to get to the ranch today, did 36 miles and he said it was probably a mistake.
While the other hiker made dinner I set up my tent just outside the building.
Plan to wake up early, assuming I don’t sleep through alarm, and hike the 14 miles to Pie Town as fast as possible.