Day 1 25 miles AZT mile 23.1
Back in the proverbial saddle again! The first day on trail went pretty well. Traveling last night went smoothly, after flying from NY to Tucson with a quick layover in Chicago we got to our hotel around 11:30 and to sleep shortly after that. I made arrangements with a local trail angel for a ride to the border and he was at the hotel promptly at 6am. The ride didn’t go that well though. This guy was having some sort of meltdown and was venting all his frustrations at us. He seemed to be pretty upset that I didn’t return a text and email that he thought he sent to me but I never received. After his 5-10 minute tirade we sat mostly in silence for the next couple hours until we got to the border. The ride wasn’t all bad though, there was very little traffic and we made good time. Plus I pointed out a few beautiful red tailed hawks perched along the roadside.
We got dropped off at the parking lot for the Coronado National Memorial and from there had to walk a couple miles south to the Mexican border and the beginning of the Arizona Trail. After a couple high fives and the obligatory border pictures we were on our way, hiking north 800 miles to Utah. This was the prettiest US/Mexican border I’ve seen and it was also a bit challenging right away. Over the first 6 miles we climbed 3000 feet to put us up over 9000 and then walked a long a ridge for awhile. We even walked through a little snow for a bit. There were a few others starting out today and we walked with Quiet Earp off and on. Unlike his name implies, he was talkative, sharing stories of his hikes and adventures. Queen B and I put in a full day and this evening found ourselves walking into a beautiful Arizona sunset before picking out a flat spot to cowboy camp in Parker Canyon. A great first day!
Day 2 27.4 miles AZT mile 50.5
I slept like a rock for most of the night even though it was somewhat chilly this morning. For the first couple miles I was too lazy to get my gloves out of my pack so I just walked with my hands in my armpits. As the trail started to climb and the sun came up over the mountains I warmed up quickly. For most of the morning we were climbing and dropping and it was a beautiful day. It was nice to see that this trail gets some use as we met up with a handful of other hikers at a little creek this morning; Tally-Ho and Rose, and Porchlight and Wild Feather. It started to get cloudy and for most of the day the skies were overcast and the temperature was cool, ideal for walking, until it started to rain anyway. More like a light drizzle this afternoon that really wasn’t too bad. The trail leaves Coronado National Forest and pops out onto a road for a few miles and then through the town of Patagonia. Our plan was to stealth camp somewhere along the side of the road but as we walked we noticed it was all fenced off and private property. There was an RV Park that had tent sites for short money and since I didn’t want to get shot by a rancher with the ‘shoot first, ask questions second’ mentality we ponied up the few bucks to tent at the RV Park. Plus it had a shower which was nice, even though a it seemed like overkill after only 2 days.