Twig Adventures

GET Day 35: Sevilleta

Saturday Apr 24th, 2021, 1100-1900 Johnson Hill (Socorro) to Grey Ridge cut, Segment 33, mm 643 23.5 miles (plus 9 from Thursday’s attempt) I had never been so on the fence about finishing a hike before. I didn’t manage to hold dinner down overnight and the knot in my stomach felt the worst it had when I woke up. I fretted for hours overnight about what to do. I knew Stellar was ready to walk again, so at least that was settled. Sam was driving to Phoenix on this day, so I could just go back with him. Or hang out for a few more days, meeting Stellar down the road. Or just keep walking…which I’ve never been more loathe[…]

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GET Day 34: Socorro & the Malaise

Tuesday Apr 20th, 2021, 0630-1900 South Canyon to Socorro 20 miles (Plus 3 days on pause following this…it’s a long post) It ended up being a lot warmer than expected overnight but at the cost of some vicious winds. Starting around 1 am, 40 mph gusts roared down the mountains. I had to get up to fortify some stakes and even then, I worried that my tent might be ripped apart. The tension of waiting for each wave to hit, hoping it wouldn’t be the final blow…needless to say I didn’t sleep very well. My pinion pine didn’t do a lot but it was better than nothing. I guess we should have camped further inside the canyon but who’s to[…]

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GET Day 33: Magical Magdalena Mountains

Monday Apr 19th, 2021, 0830-1900 Magdalena to South Canyon end, alt to Socorro via Magdalena mountains. 25 miles The skies cleared and the weather was supposed to be great the rest of the week. Time to hike! But first we had to finish the big plate of leftovers that Osiris and Michael had given us the night before. They were going to be closed for several days and hate wasting food, so they often give it away to customers. The plate was a sampling of mostly fresh stuff like salad and slaw that’s perishable. All stuff I was in bad need of. So Pro tip for starving hikers: time your visit to Sunday night! Having gotten only a 2 day[…]

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GET Days 31 & 32: Magdalena

Saturday Apr 17th, 2021, 0630-0930 Monica Tank to HWY 60, then ride to Magdalena 10 miles It was so terribly cold overnight. I woke to pee around 3 am to find that all my water bottles were frozen. I made several cups of coffee in the morning to warm up, having to break ice to do so. It was hard to pack with my hands so cold and not functioning. At least I had less to pack since I was wearing every piece of clothing I was carrying. Even my aligners that I’m wearing for my teeth correction froze when I took them out to eat breakfast. This was probably the coldest night I’ve yet experienced while thru-hiking. Walking didn’t[…]

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GET Day 30: Mount Withington

Friday Apr 16th, 2021, 0800-1830 Indian Springs to Monica Tank, alt to avoid Potato Canyon 19 miles The answer to the cliff-hanger of Day 29 is that Stellar was just fine, if a bit tired and sleepy. He made it back to camp around 1:30 am with water in tow. I woke up early in the morning as usual but took it easy, in case and understandably if he wanted to sleep in. He didn’t really so we were back on trail, grinding like always. It had been quite cold overnight. The little mud puddle at the spring was iced over. So it was good that we had another big climb to a place called Grassy Lookout to warm us[…]

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GET Day 29: Blue Mountain & Water Blues

Thursday Apr 15th, 2021, 0700-1930 San Mateo Canyon to Indian Springs, segment 29, mm 535 26 miles Coyotes howled all night but their antics didn’t bother me in the least…I kind of like the sound. I also heard a western screech owl. It stayed pretty warm overnight and we woke to high cloud cover. I was glad that it would stay cool for the climb into the San Mateos but worried that the bad weather was moving in early. We began walking up the Burma road towards the southern end of the Apache Kid Trailhead. The road seems to have several offshoots and I’m uncertain where it goes or comes from. We bothered some more cows, unintentionally as always, then[…]

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GET Day 28: Breaking Bad

Wednesday Apr 14th, 2021, 1300-1900 HWY 52 to San Mateo Canyon, segment 27, mm 510 17 miles I woke up thinking this would be a fine place and day to take a zero… that’s how much I liked the cabin. Even though this tiny town had hardly anything, it had just enough…provided the general store’s open. I was up early to get some blog work done, so I went over to the church. Pastor Jim had invited us to go inside to use the wifi, so that we didn’t freeze sitting outside. It was a lot like a library, only all the books had a very specific theme. When the long-awaited general store opened, we had 2 more surprises waiting.[…]

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GET Day 27: Winston

Tuesday Apr 13th, 2021, 0630-1030 Duck Canyon solar water tank to HWY 52, then road walk/hitch to Winston, segment 27, mm 494 12 miles All was quiet overnight, save for some coyotes. We got an early start, eager to get to the road to maximize our hitching luck. Perhaps we could hit rush hour into town. The sunrise over the San Mateos, our next mountain range, was fantastic. We walked a series of farm tracks and some cross country to get to the road. The landscape was open prairie, with views for miles. We saw a herd of about 40 elk along the way. They ran all over the hills, in and out of sight. We could follow their movements[…]

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GET Day 26: Triple Segments

Monday Apr 12th, 2021, 0700-1830 CDT mile 250 to Duck Canyon near solar water tank, start segment 27, mm 484 30 miles It was our longest day yet on this trail, partly because the cruisey trail allowed it but predominantly because we were motivated to get through a 26 mile dry stretch without having to carry too much water. Our notes told of a fairly reliable solar trough at the beginning of segment 27, so we decided to make that the aim of our day. We’re lucky to be able to do such big miles because it makes these dry stretches much more manageable. I realize that’s not the case for a lot of people. It’s either carry the weight[…]

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GET Day 25: South Diamond Creek & the CDT

Sunday Apr 11th, 2021, 0700-1900 MeOwn complex to CDT mile 250, segment 25, mm 454.4 25.5 miles It turned out to be really warm overnight, despite the forecast. It was good that we camped where we did because a few miles down the trail, we descended 500′ into South Diamond Creek, where there was still frost on everything. Even parts of the creek were frozen and snow lingered in many places. Parts of this valley still felt like fall, with leaves littering the ground and even clinging colorfully to the trees. But as the sun began to filter past the high canyon walls and through the trees, a distinct air of spring permeated the valley. This quickly became the most[…]

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