Arizona Trail – Day 29 (27 miles)
So, sleeping next to a wildlife water tank is interesting! I woke up to coyotes halfway through drinking water when the noticed me sleeping a hundred yards away. They freaked out and started yapping and running in all directions. This woke me up in a hurry.
The next morning, I just lay there for 30 minutes watching all the birds coming to land and drink water. There were so many small birds but maybe 15 hawks landed there for a drink as well. The area was so full of life, with a group of elk nearby and I saw a few of the coyotes again in the light.
The journey there was a bit of a blur, except for the Grand Lookout Tower that I climbed. It was high enough to look out over the top of the trees, with this little thing known as the Grand Canyon looming in the background. I am so close!
I walked hard and somehow managed to cover the 21 miles in 5 hours.
I spent an hour in town drinking coffee to use Starbucks’ internet. How does the Grand Canyon, with well over a million visitors a year, not have reception? Here I talked to Tom from @atom_packs, who has given me this pack to test. It was half getting some info from him about the CDT and half giving some feedback about the pack.
I then realized the time, said goodbye and ran the 6 miles to the Grand Canyon Backcountry Permit Centre. I got there just before it closed, and managed to get my permit for the Hayduke route through the canyon starting tomorrow! Yay, 70 odd miles hiking along the river! I will also need to stick my thumb out to the passing rafters in order to hitchhike across the river.
I resupplied and recharged my batteries before heading to the campground.
The campground was full, so I asked a group if I could share their campground. They warmly agreed. It turned out that they were a bunch of physio grads and their professors away for a weekend.
I stayed up way too late talking to all the interesting people there. It was almost midnight before I got to sleep.