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Buck30 - Other Trail Journal - 2022

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Brian (Buck-30)
Begins: Oct 11, 2022
Direction: Eastbound

Daily Summary
Date: Thu, Nov 24th, 2022
Start: Tonopah
End: Saddle mountain, east side
Daily Distance: 11
Trip Distance: 774.0

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 63
Journal Visits: 3,454
Guestbook Views: 60
Guestbook Entrys: 3

Desert WTH Day 30

I woke early and realized the motel manager was almost definitely an ass,
there was 1 car here and 16 rooms. I find it hard to believe the previous
night was completely full and he couldn't get me a room at 1pm. Now I hope
he smells chicken shit in the 115 degree summer for eternity. Ok maybe
that's a bit extreme but I'm still mad! Heather tells me I should calm down.

I spent the early morning reading Tree's journal from her and Brett's
initial 2020 WTH scouting hike. My impression was what a total fucking
nightmare! It sure does give some perspective being out here 2 years later
with multiple additional scouting section hikes by Brett and 2 other hikers
who did sections and then the first thru hike this last winter. I read the
journal back in 2020 but really didn't remember much other than them being
trapped in some canyon for days, well that was the Bill Williams river! A
much worse experience than I had! But more than that just the day to day
difficulties that so many times didn't seem to work out. I think this part
surprised me since I've done a fair number of unvetted miles out here,
miles that have been routed in detail by Brett via Google satellite but not
yet hiked. And they've all worked out really well. While I might complain
about the constant rocks, rarely have I found anything too difficult, most
of the XC has been pretty mild in fact. Maybe this is some sort of result
of their scouting hikes and understanding the overall landscape better
which then makes it easier to map better routes at home. Not sure, but I
can say I'm appreciative of all that brutality that went into this route
before my current hike!

I resupplied mostly at the Pilot but had to get some dinners at the Mobil.
I had debated about caching food here but am glad I didn't. The resupply
was fine and like I expected, I would appreciate just buying different food
even if it was pricey gas station food. I walked out around 11:30 and
figured I'd try to catch a ride once I was past the egg farm just outside
of town. Sadly no one ever stopped for me although there were maybe only a
half dozen vehicles who passed me. There was a bit of a wind now and I was
lucky it was blowing towards the egg farm so I wasn't getting that smell
for miles.

I had some easy dirt road miles approaching Saddle Mountain. I think this
next 3 or so day section is going to be much easier than the recent
sections, there seems to be a lot more dirt road walking. The area
approaching the trail was a boondockers paradise. At least a dozen trailers
spread out along the way. Everything was quiet and chill though, seemed
like a nice place to stay although I've never thought it was for me.
Heather says she could see herself doing it if she could somehow have fast
internet for work. I don't think I'd like to be out there in the exposed
desert for weeks or months. I think I would actually just get really bored.

I picked up some small trail up to an old road where I looked up and to my
left to see the bare white ass of a man which wasn't very pleasant. I ran
away as quickly as possible over a small pass and down some fading cairned
trail on the other side. The actual Saddle mountain peak looked quite

I had pretty much purposely only carried enough water out of town to get to
a guzzler at days end. I'm always so thirsty after town stops so I figured
no matter how much I carried I'd want more which was basically true. The
guzzler was only 0.25 off but it was quite rugged and difficult to get to.
I did a bit of a rocky contour towards the guzzler, tried to not drop into
a drainage and then reached a spur ridge looking down into the guzzler in a
deep gully. I dropped my pack and scrambled 30 or 40 feet down a rocky
ledgey sidewall. Nothing crazy but easier without pack and with giant pour
off above and below the guzzler I knew I wasn't exiting that way and would
have to come back up to my pack anyway. It was a cool guzzler, there was a
roof to prevent evaporation and the guzzler was actually just the natural
rocky drainage dammed in with concrete on the front. There was a lot of
water with a really oily green algae on top but the water under it was
clear and good. I did have to pour water on my bottle and hand to get the
slick algae off of it, very odd algae. I do wonder exactly how the Bighorn
sheep actually get water, I didn't see any sort of drinking contraption
other than a large tinaja below full of water unless the guzzler is somehow
funneling water into that.

I climbed back up to my pack and exited the drainage I had just contoured
over. It led me out to some petroglyphs, not impressed (I never really am,
sorry, I see a well known hiker who gushes over them all the time and I'm
always thinking, I don't get it, it's a bunch of basic drawings that mostly
people don't even understand what they mean - to some extent I do get why
it's neat but ultimately I'm usually nonplussed by it - maybe I'm just an
ignorant person!)

I made my way out to a flat spot with a scenic view of the mountains for
camp. I also have a good view of I believe a nuclear power plant way in the
distance. My Thanksgiving dinner consisted of an apple fritter the size of
my head, Subway cookies which I love and Cheetos. Sounds like a winner to
me. I did have a Subway footling Turkey sub for Thanksgiving lunch before
leaving town.

Entry 35 of 35
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The Desert Winter Thru-Hike (WTH)


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