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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Pie Town to Grants

From Pie Town it was on to Grants, 80 miles away. about 65 miles of that was on roads and 10 miles not on roads was across a lava field. A lot of rough walking.
The first day out of town it was great to have company for distraction as the miles rolled by. We stopped by the Thomas Ranch where an old couple made water available to hikers. They had been married for 62 years and never actually finished a story. There's something about listening to old people that I always enjoy, especially now that I don't have my own grandparents.
Later down the road a truck pulled up and told us about a new water source and gave us beers. The only good thing about hiking on roads is free beer. We caught up with him at the well he put in and he was a pretty cool guy. Clement had adjusted well to the western ideas and was leaning on the truck drinking his Bud.
The next day was more road walk into the evening. Fortunately it was a full moon to light the last of the way to our tent site.
The next obstacle was the lava field called The Malpais, spanish for "bad land." It was up and down over rough lava exposed to the sun in the middle of the afternoon. It was rough and we celebrated when we finally finished it.
We hiked two miles past a water cache expecting to find a windmill that was supposed to work. When we got there, the wind was blowing but the prop wasn't turning. We tried to jump start it by climbing to the top and trying to jump start it by pushing, but that didn't work. So the next morning I hiked the 2 miles back to the cache, got 3 gallons of water for us, and hiked it back to the group. Then I took off and headed to town, determined to make it to Grants before the Post Office closed.
I hiked a pretty good clip and made it fine. I was also motivated by the big grey clouds that were blowing all around. When I finished, I rewarded myself with McDonalds. In Grants were another couple of Trail Angels that put us up, did our laundry and made dinner and breakfast. It's amazing the generosity that people can have for complete strangers. They say our gratitude is more then we can get out of it. They are in the business of making custom bird cages. If you know anyone interested, check them out:

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