A special guest

Today we met Nancy “Solo” Grayson

Nancy and Pete

She was at the trailhead in Oracle where I picked up Pete ( who has now completed 200 miles – one quarter of the trail).

Nancy is a full time trail Angel. She has done most of her angel work on the Continental Divide Trail, but is kindly helping out hikers on the AZT this spring

Notice the CDT sticker on the bumper
And the mirror

The van is Nancy’s retirement home and her retirement time is spent hiking and helping hikers.

She’s the first full time trail angel I have ever met and she is inspirational to Pete and me.

At the American Flag 🇺🇸 Trailhead in Oracle

The hiking community (hikers, trail overseers, trail maintenance workers, and angels like Nancy) make this a very special place. So lucky to be out here!!

Junco

Bird Sightings

Very limited cell phone service after leaving colossal cave kept me from uploading images, but I’ll get some stuff up now

Canyon Towhee

Got this lightweight camera with a telephoto lens and video capability which I’m learning how to use. Here’s a few southwest birds to identify

Phainopepla
? A western screech owl

The owl was living in a tree right above our tents and was vocalizing during the night.

100 miles

Hit the 100 mile mark this morning with a group of 5 of us.

Storm clouds in the distance
We missed the big storm ahead but got rained on off and on
Hiked under Interstate 10
Pete got cold so our friend Aaron taught him the “hypothermia dance”

A few more photos from today

Snakeskin
Pincushion cacti
A creature
A jackrabbit

Heading to colossal cave tomorrow

10%

Just past the 80 mile mark on the 800 mile AZT.

Got up and over the Santa Rita mountain ski island

Santa Rita’s

Colder than we expected but clear.

All good

Junco

Patagonia – Mile 51

Paula came down from Tucson and met us in Patagonia. We cleaned up and did some laundry at our Hotel – the famous (sort of) Stage Stop Inn.

Issues now include foot blisters for me and Pete – so we loaded up on Bandaids. The water sources have been pretty shakey, and our water filter clogged, so we had to get an industrial strength filter for the next stretch. Envision a muddy puddle shared with the local cows 😱

All good though. Heading north shortly. Next trail town is Vail, Az near a park called Colossal Cave. We’ll be there in 5 days.

Will post whenever we have a signal.

Short Post from a mountain top

Up in the Canelo Hills after descending from Miller Peak and the Huachuca mountain range ( our first “sky island”)

Strawberry Hedgehog cactus

First bloom – on an ocotillo

Rainbow hedgehog cactus

All for now.

Town of Patagonia tomorrow

Miller Peak

Just arrived at the summit of Miller Peak – over 9000 feet – one of the highest points on the trail.

A bit of snow up here.

Saw some caves or mine shafts on the way

They had a large controlled burn in the valley that put out a lot of smoke

View as we climbed

All for now…

Off to the races

Paula took us to the trailhead and we started heading north

Soon we got near the border wall construction site.

They let us get within a mile of the border, but no closer.

Saw a few cool plants.

Mexican Pinon Pine

Heading north!!!