Episode 18: GREAT DIVIDE BASIN


First morning in the Great Basin and it just Well, it’s beautiful. It’s beautifully Vast and empty. I don’t run into hikers a whole lot on trail But I guess in going slower today kind of givin’ Aaron time to catch up I actually ran into Five other hikers at the water source back there. So that was pretty exciting I might end up camping with all of them tonight, which will be a nice change I remember reading in Guthooks that there, a comment, that there would be a reservoir and it’s clear cool water and a nice place to go swimming and I thought, you mean I get to go swimming in the Great Divide Basin? What in the world? And sure enough got to it today after being exposed all day To the Sun and the wind it was nice you know when you can’t find change at least find some water to go swimming in and Kind of soak some sore feet and really just get the salt off of our bodies Then there is a better water source about a mile ahead. It’s an electric well so nobody’s been in it swimming, you know So I don’t have to get like butt water and drink it through my Sawyer Squeeze. Best water source in the Basin Award. That’s a standard look at him he’s like I could pose better Like I’ve got this pose. I’ve got like the through hiker IV drip pose going Could we take a picture of you like as I am our friends are coming there’s an invasion Hey y’all better mooooo-ve, they saidMoooo-ve over folksYeah, girl do it. I totally got that The Sun is up Patches and I, which is the other girl that’s in this group that I’ve been hiking with this section We ended up hiking about a mile or so more than the guys did yesterday evening or really last night and So we decided to stop here and we both cowboy camped. She usually cowboy camps I do sometimes but not if it’s gonna be real cold. And it is easier for me to Get up and out of camp earlier if I cowboy coz that coyote is just raisin’ CainI better not call it over here becauseYesterday ended up being about a twenty eight point eight mile day So I’m hoping today will be close to the same. But we do have a couple of Climbs, they’re not real bad. But still it might be a little bit slower going than it was yesterday Aaron and I had planned on doing the 24 hour challenge this stretch because It’s pretty flat. I went ahead and mailed a lot of my electronics ahead and My stove so I’ve been drinking cold coffee or You know, whatever room-temperature water not even not even like iced coffee. Right? Just like the stagnant water coffee, but anyway, you got to do what you got to do. And the reason I went ahead and left is I have to make it to Lander by a certain day because my boyfriend Kyle and my brother Dakota are coming out to hike for a while with me and So I wanted to make sure that I could get there by the day that they’re supposed to be in town Well, he still has left town yet So it’s just not gonna work out this stretch and I am kind of bummed but you know, the saying goes the trail provides So I’ve actually been hiking around this group of five people and they’re all 40 and above So for all y’all who are like, oh, I’m too old. I’m 50. We’ve got people in this group including myself from each like decades so we got 30s we got 40s and then 50s and 60s So four different decades of age groups are represented in this group of six folks that are kind of hiking Loosely together this stretch. And I mean I could have done the challenge alone But I don’t I don’t really want to. It’s kind of one of the nice things about the trail maybe you have intentions of doing a certain something like the 24 hour challenge and then you decide like I don’t really want to do that and it’s okay because when you’re on the trail and you’re living this lifestyle, you can basically do whatever you want, you know, as long as you hike enough, you know and Don’t play too much so that you can get to Canada on time or I mean or not whatever, you know That’s that’s the thing too, in the middle of a thru-hike you can go, you know, I’m done I’ve gotten all I’ve wanted to out of this and then go home and I mean I can’t do that Like I don’t her at least I haven’t had the desire to ever do that but you know, it’s just that’s the freedom of thru-hiking is Getting to do exactly what you want everyday and meanwhile work towards this bigger picture goal of completing a thru-hike or a Triple Crown and it’s just pretty incredible. Okay, I’m gunna come closer and you’re gonna run away but I’m still gonna come closer you think that…Loose sand: nice for long walks on the beach, not fun for backpacking. Ruuuude. This is the tiniest Little horny toad I’ve ever seen And I’m recording it with a macro lens That’s how little this guy is There he is and for reference my finger. Hey found some shade. I can’t let this go to waste. I’m wasn’t really ready for a break yet. Like I don’t feel like I’ve earned one but When it’s this warm out and this exposed you don’t pass a tree. mmmlunch Well grasshoppers gotta eat too Lots of trees Getting spoiled today Look how sweet a bunch of itty bitty baby babies and then some Teenage babies Hey sweets Yeah, y’all better get up over there you go make it rain if you keep laying down Well, I done found myself in another one of these situations where I’m climbing a ridge and this Ugly cloud is rolling over and thunder Right over me So I’m just squatted down here just trying to get low to the ground and wait it out I’ve seen a good many trees today compared toCompared to the other days at least and of course none of those are in sight right now, but So I’m just gonna set here amongst the sagebrush and try to look like, you know, a bush I’ve been sitting here for about 25 minutes and it’s pretty much rolled out that way Still thundering but I have to go up there Closer to that Ridge and then I’ll cut out over that way So I think it’ll be moved off pretty good by the time I start Cutting back to the left there when I’m coming up a hill like this I’m always excited to get to the top of course, but I’m always excited to see what’s on the other side Wow… More desert but it sure is pretty There’s an animal up there on that ridge just watching me There they go! Do do dooot da doot da dooo So we’ve gone from the Continental Divide Trail to the Oregon Trail, we’re now going to Get on some oxen and hope that we can you know float the rivers and we’re gonna hope there’s some Buffalo and deer out here to shoot and hopefully we won’t shoot more meat than we can carry You know the things you do on the Oregon Trail, you know I made the joke about the Oregon Trail and I was like referencing the computer game and if you were growing up in the late 80s or early Nineties and you’re probably familiar with that game, but it’s pretty incredible. You know, it’s like this journey that I’m on out here Exploring lands that you know, there aren’t really many people out here But you have to remember that just because you’re out here and there aren’t a ton of people Doesn’t mean like you’re one of the first few to come through, right? And to think back of the folks who were traveling west on the Oregon Trail in hopes for more is just Incredible to think of the challenges that those folks went through I mean there was no dirt road coming through the Grand Basin then you know Not quite sure whether is now I guess for cattle and huntin. Yeah Recreation I guess for those folks just are so inspiring to think about and know how always Having a dream and chasing it and having people that do that I think it you know, kind of moves things forward in time to think like I’ve got it made I get to go to town tomorrow and be in an air-conditioned building and get food served to me and You know, I’m pretty pathetic compared to the people who came before so it’s just crazy to look back at those pioneer people and the folks that had that pioneer spirit when you think you’ve got it bad or you’re taking risks to chase a dream like Think of all the risks that you know other folks have taken. To kind of look at the whole Big picture it kind of helps Size things up a little bit for me in my mind Found glorious shade, it might only be like two feet wide, but Rocks are wonderful and water and grass Are we even in the basin? “Do you want me to fill a bottle up for you?”

“No, I’m good” Just going to try to make myself chug this Gettin’ my greensBooooom So Patches has a Thousand lumen headlamp. Dang, like it looks like a car is coming through for real That is awesome. So no mountain lions are going to hide from us on the road or rattlesnakes or you know whatever we might have to worry about out here and we are currently night hiking so that we can get as close as Possible to Atlantic City, which we hope has some breakfast. This is the moon risin’ And we have set up Our tent spots we are cowboy camping right here Watching the moon risin’ it’ll keep us up all night because It’ll be bright out a glorious tree in (I keep wanting to call it the Mojave) in the Great Basin one of 12 Maybe it’s still kind of early. So it’s not too hot and we’re trying to get breakfast so we’re not going to sit under it’s lovely branches, but But wait Yeah You tree, hugger. I think this is Atlantic City what a city. I really am so grateful for the folks that I met and got to hike with this section because Like I mentioned before it was a pretty brutal section. I mean, it was beautiful in its own rugged way and just different than Really anything we’ve seen before. I mean, yeah, of course a desert’s a desert. There just seemed to be more life here than In the desert in New Mexico. I came out on the stretch intending to do This challenge and so I sent forward my stove and last night to top it all off Patches was like, you know I have an extra backpacker meal and I have my stove and You have water you can have a hot dinner because I’ll cook it for you And so she made me chicken fried rice and I mean after So many days of just eating snacks for dinner and tortillas, ugh… You know, it’s just normal non cook food it was so nice to just have a warm meal just to kind of finish this long stretch off with it So, you know the trail provides that’s definitely a saying and I feel like it Provided me with some good folks to hike around for this last section. Otherwise, it just would’ve been near as Exciting and I don’t know we just all kept each other encouraged and kept each other pushing I’m sure I’ll run into these folks again down the line, but I just really am glad for the Experience I had in the Basin.

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