Sorting Trail Life Out at the Second Mail Drop

Cottonwood Trees and Creek

Chapter 7

It was time to get my electronics in order.

I passed underneath the unending fury of Interstate 10 before finding quick seclusion in a desert oasis. The AZT passes through the Cienega Creek Natural Preserve, just north of I-10 and east of Tucson, where a beautiful and clear creek feeds hundreds of cottonwoods in a small sandy canyon.… Keep reading...

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Civilization and My Night Skies

Night Sky over Sky Island

Chapter 6

The mark of the civilization was now becoming more obvious. I was hiking below large homes propped up on hills so the residents could boost their ego knowing that people were talking about their house. It didn’t matter if people were complaining about how their house ruins the view, they just wanted the attention, otherwise they wouldn’t have put their houses in such noticeable locations.… Keep reading...

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Adjusting to 100 Miles of Trail

Silhouetted Trees Under Sunset Cloud

Chapter 5

My days were becoming more euphoric. The stresses of preparation that I had carried onto the trail were beginning to fade. I had learned how to cope with my (relatively) abundant array of electronics and was feeling good about it. The days were open and free. I seemed to have a perfect amount of delicious trail food that didn’t need cooking, and I had just enough to get me to the next stop – an average of about four days.… Keep reading...

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Searching for the Boss

Mount Wrightson Above Foothills

Chapter 4

The Santa Rita Mountains are an underrated mountain range. They can be seen from dozens of miles around, but the draw of a national park directly to its north tends to lure visitors away. They hold a secret though. A secret that crawls through the most remote parts of the forests, avoiding the few visitors that hike the trails, and lives a lonely life of solitude.… Keep reading...

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The Nature of Southern Arizona

Southern Arizona Sky Islands

Chapter 3

There’s no better way to usher in a long-distance thru-hike than by entering a National Park Service entity that leads directly into a designated Wilderness Area. Two very well preserved areas rising in a mountain wilderness above an undisturbed desert vastness extending into Mexico. A sky island secretly hiding forests, snow, wildlife, and many others treasures that wouldn’t survive at its base.… Keep reading...

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The Stress of Starting a Thru-Hike

Desert Grasslands Hiking Trail

Chapter 2

Our first obstacle came before we even reached the trail. I had buddied up with two other thru-hikers through an online forum. Most Arizona Trail (AZT) thru-hikers will, at some point, get pointed to the hikearizona.com website to meet other thru-hikers and collect valuable information. Such was my case since I needed help.… Keep reading...

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