Day 11 on the Continental Divide Trail

The morning featured maybe 50 stream crossings. I became more proficient at locating the trail after each wade of the river. Until 11am, I was cool due to shade from the cliffs and tree canopy. AZ sycamores, AZ walnuts, box elders, ponderosa pines, and junipers were the dominant trees (see photo). Coyote willows often lined the river banks. NM privet grew on somewhat drier riparian sites. I ate lunch in the shade of a huge sycamore. As I was leaving, a day hiker walked by and gave me an apple. An hour later I walked under the Hwy 15 bridge. I left the river and walked along Hwy 15 for 1.5 miles to Doc  Campbell’s Post. I got my food box and a cold drink. Seventy-five and Lauren were washing their clothes and organizing their food. I commiserated with a hiker who had an infected toe. I packed my food and left the pleasant shade and the companionship of the hikers. I road-walked to the Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument Visitor Center for water. Then up the Middle Fork of the Gila River for 2.5 miles to a delightful sandy, shady campsite near the river. 19 miles today. The next few days are supposed to be cooler. I hope so.

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