Saturday, March 7, 2015

AZT Day 5-Freeman Road

Miles 247 to 232
Arizona Trail Passage 15 and 14
15 miles
3/7/15

Fast walking this morning to Freeman Road, the trailhead marking the border of passages 15 and 14, and site of a water cache.
Hiking on the Arizona Trail.
Boulders provided an interesting rest break. We climbed up and I marveled at a tiny pothole with water. As I contemplated taking a little, a bee flew up and stung my cheek. Ouch!
Playing on the boulders.
Well-defended pothole.  Don't even think about taking this water.
My first thought was thank goodness it didn't get Jan, as she is allergic, and next thought is thank goodness it didn't get a critical body part like a foot or eye. All thoughts are about making it through. l can deal with prickery pokey things--this place is full of them. Not gonna stop us. Though I decided to leave that water alone.
Jan removes the bee's stinger from my cheek.
Arrived at the Freeman road cache with two liters of water left. I was impressed with the big locked metal box that was tucked away from the road.  I don't believe in trusting caches- they can't be counted on, but I was delighted to find this one well stocked with gallons labeled for public use, so we were able to get some much-needed water. Whoever maintains this cache-- thank you so very much!  It's so nice to see it so neat with no trash around.
The well-stocked Freeman Road Cache.
Down the trail, we met four backpackers out for a section hike, including Wendy from the Arizona Trail Association. They gave us great info about water sources for the next passage. We were relieved to hear that all the water sources had water, and they gave us some tips on how to get water from the cattle tanks.  "Climb the ladders."  Guess we will find out what that means!

This passage was more barren with few flowers and more cactus and spines. It is foolish to have a hammock out here. But I found a gully with bushes on either side to hang across. Hoping cattle or critters don't use this wash during the night. We saw cows on the far hillside as we watched the colorful sunset. Lots of clouds to color the sky.
Sunset.
After bedtime, it starts raining and I get up to put up my tarp. It rains again a few times during the night. Should I move out of the wash in the rain? But I am too comfortable to care enough to move onto the ground anywhere else. Too dedicated to my deep hammock slumber.
Gully hanging fool.
Jan wrote a great post about hiking passage 14.  Read it here on her blog.

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