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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: Fri, Jul 15th, 2011
Start: Columbus Map 04 Section 23
End: CR 8003
Trip Distance: 18.0

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 426
Journal Visits: 6,827
Guestbook Views: 385
Guestbook Entrys: 12

Last PLB Location

Continental Divide Trail Map

Day 4 Retry

Rise with big hopes of making it to Emory Pass, where we had cached a gallon of water under the big log about 15 yards under the trailhead. My navigation skills did not rise to the occasion. Here's how the day went. Road walk continued to point 8 on Coumbus04 map. However, I used water from the tire since I couldn't access water from well nor holding tank. I appreciated my Hiker water purifier albeit larger than other purification systems. The day's road walk continued intermixed with trail tread of sandy wash up to McMullen Springs. Here one can access the pipe directly with an on/off switch for the near by solar pump near by. But I did not align map and compass correctly because 45 minutes after leaving the well, the terrain and map did not correspond. Rats. Back to last known point of reference, i.e., the well. Again, even with seemingly patient map orientation, I miss Berranda Creek. While on my second erroneous segment, I establish a field vantage point and do locate what appears to be Berranda C. I bush whack over two steep arroyos to trail and resume my northwestern jaunt with "premiums paid" i.e., lower water supply, less energy and lowered confidence. I continue for hour when I reassess my situation around 1330: I am not picking up any key terrain features such as the Thompson Cone; have probably 6 more miles to get to the next water site (a good piped spring per Ley note 3 on Columbus 03 map) which includes a 1.8 mile climb; temps still high; a no fire cooking prohibition since I will be in the Gila National Forest; 2 quarts of water remaining. I have enough resources to get back to the McMullen Spring tank or go for it. I pass and take Option 1 figuring I can do this one in cooler a May or a October. Very disappointed in self but accepting the decision and now time to implement this extraction.
The DeLorme map proved very helpful in planning my retreat route. Rather than execute a total backtrack along the trail previously taken, following two county roads that lead to Rte 27 present a more direct route back to Deming. (Whew, this is a tough pill to swallow.) And, the routes pass by four ranches that probably have water supplies. Stop one is the Latham Ranch. The home is at least 1/3 mile from the gate. As I approach it appeared deserted and when I got there it was abandoned. Probably a very nice home at one time. Water pipes were sporadic but did provide about 2 liters before ceasing production altogether: no more water. I also plugged my Droid into an external outlet to recharge the batteries. Followed CR 8003 past another Latham Ranch location: no one home. Camped near a Forest Service access road out of direct sight. Had plenty of curious steers as company during the night questioning the arrival of this new person. Around 0200 a loud diesel truck slowly cruised passed very close to my location. Maybe my own paranoia but was glad I was in a clandestine camping mode.

Entry 14 of 15
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Continental Divide Trail - 2011

Poppa Smurf


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