AZT Day 41: Through the Catalinas

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Monday, November 5
Miles: 19.8 + 0.2 bonus miles
Starting/ending: 604.7/624.5
Camp elevation: 4846 ft

I slept ok in our hiker trash bunker even with the sound of rustling sleeping pads. In the middle of the night I could hear leaves blowing across the parking lot, but in my half sleep state was sure it was a dog coming to eat our food.

I’m up at 5:30. Pack up, coffee, granola with coconut milk, hit the trail – starting with a road walk. David and I ahead, Tarek and Andrea behind. Tarek yes to us that Andrea’s feet are hurting today and that we shouldn’t wait up. Cool morning. Wind gear. Wind gear off. After a mile, we’re on real single track trail and heading uphill. My feet hurt a bit. Knees still creaky and achey.

After another mile or so we find Oklahoma just packing up camp. We walk and chat, and I fall behind. Up, up on granite boulders. Streams flowing. I think I’m off trail and backtrack, but realize the app must be off and continue ahead. At the top I take in the sweet views. Eat a bar. Catch up with David then fall behind. Sunscreen on. Another bar. Come across David and Oklahoma at a sweet water pool. I continue ahead to Hutch’s Pool for lunch. David catches up, then Oklahoma. Tortilla with cheese and hot sauce, chips, jerky. Sir by pool, filter water. We all got the trail together at 1. Podcasts. Uphill together till the next water source at Sycamore Creek. 3L. More uphill. We pass a little fashion shoot in a field.

Get to Gordon Hirabayashi campground before 5. A solid day through canyons: Sabino, Pine, Palisade, Sycamore. Really cool to see the Catalinas – the mountains that Jared and his family have been talking about. David, Oklahoma and I set up our tents.

Dinner (ramen), hot chocolate. Natural calm, CBD chocolate. Into tents at 6:30pm. Days are getting shorter for sure. Write, read – glad to have a book again. Sleep…

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