Day 19 on the Continental Divide Trail

I slept well last night. At 6:30 am, I walked a quarter mile to US Hwy 60, crossed it and continued north on a county road. Walking was easy on the smooth road surface. By and by, I met Timber, a British hiker and cyclist. We walked together for most of the morning discussing matters of consequence. When Timber stopped for a break, I kept going. Around noon Lauren passed by while 75 hiked with me for several hours to the Thomas Ranch where we ate lunch with Mr. and Ms. Thomas in the shade next to the water tap (see photo). I headed back to the trail for an 8 mile walk to the next water. The easy walking ended at the Catron/Valencia county line where fresh gravel covered the road. My feet took a beating. At 5 pm, I reached the water and dropped my pack. I soaked my feet in a plastic tub. Lauren and 75 appeared while I was cooking dinner in the lee side of the metal stock tank. Three other hikers also arrived and collected water. They all walked a few hundred yards away to camp in a wash to escape the wind. I discovered a large heel blister on my left foot, which partially accounted for some of my foot pain. I hope that I can tolerate the pain of two more days of road walking. 24.3 miles today.

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