CDT Days 5-7: Hiking through the Heat

The past three days have been tough and hot, but the scenery has improved dramatically as we’ve gained elevation and left the desert floor. My body is starting to feel less sore with each passing day.

Day 5: 14.3 Miles

Got up early and did 6.1 miles into Lordsburg. We hit the McDonald’s to eat and Dollar General to resupply, then headed to the KOA to shower and do laundry. Unfortunately, they charge $15 for a shower and don’t let hikers use the laundry. We headed over to the laundromat instead. Since no one was around but us, we took some Dr. Bronner’s into the bathroom and one by one washed ourselves the best we could out of the sink.

After laundry was done we headed back to McDonald’s to kill a few hours of heat before heading back out in the late afternoon. The temperature creeped into the 90s today and will continue for a few more. Fortunately our long stretch on the desert floor is nearly complete, and tomorrow we will actually gain a little elevation and go into some mountains. We had a beautiful sunset tonight and a nice view back to Lordsburg. Life is good.

Day 6: 20 Miles

It was a scorcher today, and we had some fairly long water carries as well. Fortunately, the terrain has changed as we’ve gained elevation. Trees are more plentiful and we’re hiking on an actual maintained trail. We made it to our second water source by 5pm. It was a little early but everyone was sore and tired so we decided to camp for the night. We’ve got a similar day ahead of us tomorrow, but this time we climb up to 8,000 feet. Oh yeah, we crossed 100 miles this morning!

Day 7: 24 Miles

We got going early this morning to beat the heat to the first water source about 10 miles in. It was a murky looking barrel in the ground, but the water filtered clear.

With 21 miles to the next water, we ate lunch and packed out 4 liters each. It was a hot day and we all had to conserve our water and take long breaks in the shade. Fortunately, we’ve entered pine forest so we had plenty of chances for shade. We went another 14 miles before setting up camp for the night. We each have a liter left to get us the 7 miles to water in the morning.