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Psmurf - Continental Divide Trail Journal - 2011

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Poppa Smurf
City: Green Bay
State: WI
Country: USA
Begins: May 11, 2011
Direction: Northbound

Daily Summary
Date: Thu, May 12th, 2011
End: South of Florida Mountains
Trip Distance: 12.0

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 350
Journal Visits: 6,891
Guestbook Views: 385
Guestbook Entrys: 12

Last PLB Location

Continental Divide Trail Map

Kind of wandering on day 2

It sounds easy: break camp. Well, it took me 1 1/2 hours to do so. Rusty camping skills is an understatement. But the trail was evident until I took a wrong turn at a gate. One of the books I read before the hike emphasized trusting your compass. The actual trail headed south east per compass: the map trail never headed southeast so I trusted my compass, not my instincts and two terrain features and headed northwest. After two hours of constant map checking and attempts to regain the trail - I meandering in the Greasewood Hills often following fencelines - I recognized I was getting low on water. I spotted a windmill which had a faucet which gushed water. Deo gratias. Dodged a very dry moment. And, I thought the tank, corral was an excellent landmark. It is IF you know where it is. Back to heading northwest to intersect the northbound trail. It never happened. I know it won't mean much to readers without a map but I had 'northwest' it all the way to west of Inman Ranch. This stubborn pursuit confirmed by a friendly Border Patol Agent (they are everywhere). Thus, I missed the water cache and put on more miles than needed. It became a long road walk back to resumption of trail. Tired and thirsty I rested under a tree along side the Waterloo Road. A motorcyle, truck and two cars passed by either nodding or lifting up the index finger off the wheel to say 'howdy'. Hot, very hot. I decided to pursue a route Keith recommended and filled up with water at the East Windmill across the highway. It was crowded there: twenty steers, cows and calves and myself. I tried to locate "the trail just east of the tank" but alas no trail contact. So, I used the southeast side of the lowest outcropping of the Floridas as my goal and bushwacked generally on a northeast straight line. The terrain offered this as route as vegetation is of desert mesquite, cacti and other prickly foliage survivors. They usually grow far enough apart to allow unscathered tromping...usually. However, the arroyos sometimes proved very rocky, steep and a time user. Arroyos are formed by water. Wonder when it last rained here? As I climbed - actually gently walking up higher elevation not climbing - rocks suddenly presented themselves in great abundance. Not a smooth surface to be found to pitch the tent so I smoothed a surface as best a I could kicing rocks like there was no tomorrow and this time with plenty of time before sundown. This worked much better. Able to send a SPOT message, I'm OK. (Since I am typing this ex post facto, I checked the email SPOT message and was able to confirm my location. Neat.)

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Continental Divide Trail - 2011

Poppa Smurf

 

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