Help Save Ripsey Wash

Arizona Trail in Desert MountainsToxic waste is about to bury a desert wilderness, dumped directly onto the current route of the Arizona Trail. The Ripsey Wash area, unchanged and uninterrupted from its primal natural state, is unmarked on most maps. It’s quiet, remote, undisturbed, and a beautifully hostile desert land. There are few, if any other humans, save for the occasional Arizona Trail thru-hiker in spring or fall.… Keep reading...

Wanderlove: Learning Love by Thru-Hiking the Arizona Trail

Wanderlove Cover

Wanderlove follows both my mental and physical journey along the 800-mile thru-hike of the Arizona Trail, “a trail as unforgiving as the plants themselves.”

I set out in March of 2016 to do a complete thru-hike of the Arizona Trail. Along the way, I was confronted with personal, mental, and physical challenges that often prevented me from continuing.… Keep reading...

Thoughts of Home

Sunrise over Sonoran Desert

Chapter 15

There weren’t other people back here. If you’re lucky, you’ll come across another AZT thru-hiker, but I wasn’t lucky. Though I was treated to a remarkably beautiful sunrise, my emotions and my will would be tested on this day.

Not realizing that just yet, I got busy capturing the sunrise, hoping I was close enough to Ripsey Wash so that some of the photos could be used for the area.… Keep reading...

Disturbances in Nature

Sonoran Desert Sunset

Chapter 14

The Tiger Mine Trailhead overlooks a vast and intimidating desert wilderness. No grand mountains ahead. No identifiable landmarks to decorate the horizon. Few roads to provide a safe outing in case of emergencies. Just a wide open desert land. This was seclusion. This was intimidating seclusion.

The obscure dirt roads intervened only every dozen miles or so in an abyss of desert.… Keep reading...

How the Arizona Trail Weeds Out Thru-Hikers

Santa Catalina and Rincon Mountians

Chapter 11

Through some of the most spectacular desert scenery I had ever seen, I pushed on, continuing my downward trek to my surprise.

I reached Hutch’s Pool shortly after the trail began a gradual climb upward. Hutch’s Pool was the last reliable water before an intimidating and lengthy climb roughly 5,000 vertical feet up to Summerhaven.… Keep reading...

Advice from Milestones

Ocotillo Along Arizona Trail

Chapter 10

Today was the day I had decided to leave the trail. It just felt like the right decision. Being on the trail felt too forced and I simply wasn’t enjoying it due to the stress. I arranged a ride to meet me at the next passage end, the Molino Basin Campground, just inside the Santa Catalina Mountains.… Keep reading...