Mason Valley fire tank (mile 62) to Stagecoach Trails RV resort,15 miles
Today in a nutshell: Fell asleep to cayotes howling, woke up to a spectacular sunrise, dropped massively in elevation, passed lots of different types of cactus and flowers, scorching heat, views out of a cowboy western film (or a scene in Top Gun where Maverick & Goose chase Jester? below the flight deck), got so hot that I thought every stick on the trail was a snake, arrived at Scissors Crossing feeling parched and there was a trail angel waiting with an icebox full of cold sports drinks and ice! This same wonderful trail angel drove all 4 of us 3 miles down the road to the RV park, a very kind man in the RV park called Ken insisted on buying Alex and I a double scoop icecream (we weren’t going to argue!), we settled in at the RV park (definitely a set from a wild western!), did laundry, showered for the first time in 5 days (but my hands are still black from the dirt), bought a sandwich from the on-site store for dinner and relaxed as the sun went down.
I have some pretty nasty blisters so I’m airing my feet tonight and it’s the first night that’s been warm enough to keep them outside my sleeping bag (now that we’ve dropped so far in elevation). It’s impossible to keep my feet clean with all the sand and dirt (even with two pairs of socks on), but I’m going to have to do my best to make sure they don’t get any worse.
Tomorrow we start a 32 mile stretch with no water so we are being dropped back off at the trail at 6:30am and I’ll be carrying 6 litres of water. The strategy is to walk in the morning until it gets unbearably hot (around 11am), then find some shade or my umbrella to wait out the heat for a few hours then continue walking when it gets cooler. There is apparently a cache after 14 miles (mile 91) and although we never want to (or should) rely on caches, we think this one is well maintained… If not there may be another water source nearby the cache but we’ve read that it recently had dead mice in it so I’d rather not rely on that one!