The Flat Lands

Somewhere (1674.8)
Day 100 – 7/30/17
Miles – 23.3
Total miles – 1466.9

It is strange that we sleep better in our tents than a hotel room. We often cannot get to sleep and when we do, we do not sleep soundly. Our minds are busy thinking of all the things that need to be accomplished while in town. When morning arrives, we are tired.  Nonetheless, we got up before six and did the last minute packing for today’s hike. Around 6:30, we went down for breakfast. We also contacted Catwater to tell her when we thought we would get out.  Yes, Catwater, our Auntie Raven, is going to hike with us again. It will be only for a section or two, however we are excited to have her with us even for a brief time. Life on the trail is so much fun with her! As we packed up the last few things, Papa Raven discovered he could not find one small black bag that belongs in his pack. This is one of two electronics bags we carry. It has some cables, a battery, replacement head phones, and most importantly, all the backup disks as well as all Mama Ravens pictures of the our entire CDT hike. That is literally thousands of pictures. It was a very important bag to be missing. We searched his backpack, nothing. We searched the hotel room, nothing. We went back to the hotel we stayed at last night and checked their lost and found, the cleaning room carts, and the room itself, nothing. Mama Raven and the kids went to look in the dumpster and Papa Raven pulled apart every pack. First his, then Bling’s, then, as he emptied Whisper’s, he found it at the bottom of her back pocket. It was a great relief to know we found all the unrepeatable pictures. Actually, relief does not begin to describe how we felt to the finding of the black bag. The words elated and euphoria would also apply!

It was after 8:30 when we all hiked out of town along with Catwater and Burning Calves, who started the CDT the same day we did. Sadly, Burning Calves will be leaving the trail in two days to go home to Germany. She is a teacher and school starts in two weeks for her. She says her students are eagerly waiting for her return from America. She is taking back with her, all types of American souvenirs for her students that she picked up along her adventure. On Sundays, Burning Calves tries to attend church on the trail when she is in town. Since today was Sunday, Burning Calves is going to church. She has chosen a Baptist service for today. It was the closest church to the trail leaving Rawlins. She is a strong and fast hiker, so she will catch up and camp with us tonight.  Our trail for the day followed a road for several miles before it cut up into fields of low sage. We are in the heart of the Great Basin, thus the land is very flat with little to see. However it’s emptiness has much beauty to it. Hopefully, Mama Ravens photos will adequately portray this. In the early afternoon, we hiked for the first time near a small clump of trees. We have not seen trees in days. Then we cut back to the  busy highway, for a noisy 4.5 miles. There was a small lake we stopped at and cleaned our milk bottles. The water was a very unappealing brown color, thus we did not want to drink it. A short time later, Catwater saw a cooler on the far side of the freeway. She crossed the road and sure enough there was clear, clean and cool bottled water for hikers. What a treat!!!  Thank you for the water. Finally, the trail left the highway and cut across an open plain on a old dirt road. Burning Calves caught up with us here. Near sundown, we stopped at one of the few locations with enough flat and smooth ground to accommodate four tents. Tomorrow we head across more flat open sage land. This will be our pattern for days to come and it will be Burning Calves last night on the trail.

Burning Calves and Catwater


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