It was a bittersweet and subsequently uneventful day. After having a great few days with Giggles, we realized that her leg was too injured to continue on the trail and that I would finish on my own. The trail didn’t change much in terms of diversity so my mind was stuck on her and whether the loneliness away from her would prevent me from finishing.
The trail was far from bland though. It weaved in and out of rolling hills and washes saturated with cactus, desert vegetation, and even wildflowers. Two welcomed features to shake up the scenery were a protected area around Cienega Creek where the trail dipped into shade and cool breezes beneath cottonwoods, and the other was when the trail went through a long tunnel underneath I-10. It’s the little things.
As I approached La Posta Quemada Ranch, which didn’t seem too keen on talking to hiker-types, the sun was beginning to get low, so I knew I’d need to find a place to camp soon. I entered the ranch and walked to the main area, only to find that the campground I was looking for was still another mile down the trail, and they weren’t even serving ice cream anymore. It’s the little things.
The next campground was the La Sevilla Campground, found after many small ups and downs through a large array of different cacti, including saguaro which were finally beginning to adorn the trail.
I secured a site, stuffed myself with some dinner and chocolate, and began doing some night photography below the mesquite trees that created a canopy above the campground. Nearby, a group with the Conservation Corps played some music as I got ready for bed.