April 23rd
Start of Bullrush Gorge(504.8)-Hwy 89/Buckskin Wash/Kanb(529)

The plan for today was to sleep in, take it easy, and camp a bit early since we are moving through this section unexpectedly fast. Normally, I’d just go on into town, but the plan for permit/scheduling reasons was that we’d come into town tomorrow(Friday), take my second zero of the trail the next day (Saturday), and then back on trail the following day(Sunday). If we went in tonight(Thursday), I’d need to take a double zero, which isn’t really isn’t needed…so the plan was to take it easy and do 20mi so we’d be about three miles from the road tomorrow…normally, doing 20mi on the Hayduke, should be a full day. Gavin and I even slept in a bit and started at 7am down Bullrush Gorge. It was unique from many of our others and reminded me of Ansel Adams photos with the stone and the trees.

Katherine had also camped before the Gorge and we leap frogged some all day passing one another at sources or individual breaks. After Bullrush Gorge, we had miles of deep sand wash labeled on the map. We figured it would be time consuming, but lucked out and the was a cattle trail on the shelf above that was packed hard for good cruising. Yay! We stayed out of the dreaded deep sand below in the wash!

Then the rest of the day was dirt road walking that we didn’t expect to be as smooth as it was. The chance of thunderstorms was around 40% and clouds gathered all day. There was a breeze and it was nice in the 60s most of the day. Just great cruising weather and we started to realized that we were going to get our 20mi in much earlier than we thought.

We stopped for final water, still unsure if we’d want to go into town with 8mi left and took enough to spend the night. Katherine was there and was also not sure, but leaning toward staying on trail. As we left the water source, we weighed the options realizing we’d hit the road at 4pm…we decided to just go into town and then the jets really turned on for the final handful of miles. At one point, we rounded a bend to see a horse walking towards us…then another…and another. They were very friendly and wanted some attention. Really beautiful too! Gavin said hi and then they even followed us a bit down the road. It was like they were puppies or something!

I was able to get a phone call out to Trish aka Tumbleweed, who offered to host me for a zero in Kanab. We lost service and weren’t sure if she was going to make it to the road at the last minute to pick us up since we were coming in a night early. We hit the road and one minute later, Trish and her friend Lori drove up honking! Perfect timing!!! We did 24mi by 4pm on the Hayduke, whew!

Trish “Tumbleweed”. me, and Lori
We got frosties and fries at Wendy’s and then went to the house and showered. Then we went out to eat some Mexican food and were joined by Carey “Carry-On” who had also contacted me before the hike and works at the local outfitter, Willow Canyon Outdoor. Everyone in this town knows one another it seems and it was fun to fold right in.

Gavin, Tumbleweed, me, Lori, and Carry-On

After dinner, we walked across the street to Willow Canyon and guess who was there…Katherine of course! She also couldn’t resist coming into town. Small town, ha!

Whew, it was quite a day and felt like multiple days with all we got done! We even went to the grocery store and stocked up for our double zero. I am happily typing this on my laptop in my clean town clothes as my clothes are in the dryer.

I finally got my new Teva flip flops which I’ve missed dearly after leaving them in camp the second week on trail. I was anxious about having too much time off, but I have plenty to do to keep me busy these next two days and I might finally get to catch up on Greys Anatomy, which I’m a handful of episodes behind. Tomorrow is focusing on updating blog things. Feeling great!

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