AZT Day 40: Oracle to Lemmon in Hiker Trash Style

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Sunday, November 4
Miles: 14.2
Starting/ending: 590.5/604.7
Camp elevation: 7795 ft (inside)

I wake in Tucson at 5:30, blog. Get up at 6:45. Alice (Jared’s aunt) picks up Jared and me for breakfast with her, Ger (uncle), Gerhard (cousin) and Laurita (cousin in law). Great to meet and/or catch up. Laurita and Gerhard bring small gifts, very sweet.

Back to Ann and Kris’. Finish packing. Quick photos. Ann generously lends e her hiking hat – more full coverage from he sun. Marie (of Marie and George hiking through the Grand Canyon) picks me up and brings me to Oracle to get back on the trail. Andrea and Tarek took a few days off to let Andrea’s feet heal from her plantar fasciitis.

I meet up with David, Andrea and Tarek at 10:30 at the American Flag Trailhead. Hike! Warm, sunny, belly full. Feet getting used to shoes, knees creaky. Uphill. Water at Hijinks Ranch. Some spots are steep. The for of us run into four friendly people on four wheelers who we chat with and give us trail mix.

Keep on hiking up! Cloud cover. Pretty mountains. Will the restaurant be open on the top of Mt Lemmon? No it closes at 5, we’ll get there at 5:30. But the store closes at 6 – let’s go! Andrea and Tarek resupply for a few extra days. I get hot chocolate, a hat (the full coverage hat isn’t working for me), and fresh fudge. The folks at the store are hiker friendly, fill our water, and mention that we can stay in the lobby of the post office or community center.

Ok! Off we go for the community center. It’s the bathroom lobby. Oh well, might as well go full on hiker trash tonight! We all pile in and Tetris our sleeping pads. We make dinner (ramen), charge stuff with the outlets, and startle only a few people trying to use the public bathrooms… Sleep…

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