Slow and easy, that’s what this section has been. I left Hikertown at 10am which is slug time for a thru-hiker. Never ever would you get on the trail later than 6 or 7am, but it was a flat walk across the desert following the aqaduct for miles. Welcome to road walking. I find it harder to walk roads than to hike up and down mountains. I’m not sure why? The monougtany of seeing the same thing for miles or not seeing the trail meander, can kill you with boredom! But once you let your guard down, is when God gets your attention. We were 6-8 miles into our hike when we saw her. A Mojave Green Snake! She was apparently dead being she didn’t hiss or move. We cautiously went up to her as she layed still on the roadway. I had never seen a Mojave Green before, just heard of their deadly venom. It was actually sad, seeing her motionless. My trail friends Treeman and Hedgehog were with me and I could tell Hedgehog was quite upset about it. She bent over & moved the snake off the roadway, laying her in the desert as to provide her a proper burial.
During these past 40 days on the trail, I have had a chance to truly witness God’s smallest of creatures in action. Ants are fascinating how they are so organized and are able to burrow through rock solid dirt and somehow turn it into fine sand. I watched as an ant carried a fellow dead ant on his back, as if he was returning him home. Beetles are funny solitary bugs. You never see them together! They just walk across the trail with their butts in the air and their head scraping across the ground. They remind me of thru-hikers. We are basically solitary, leaning over with our eyes on the trail and a big shell on our backside!
Then there are the lizards. It seems that the smaller they are, the faster they run. I see them lounging on rocks, basking in the sun, watching over their kingdom, and doing push-ups as if they are preparing for battle. They do like to chase each other, and there are many variety of lizards out here. There are moles and squirrels, chipmunks and skunks and the beautiful and noisy birds. I believe I am falling in love with all of God’s creatures, big and small.
I am getting close to finishing the first of five sections of the PCT, 702 miles of desert, Campo to Kennedy Meadows. I was so concerned about this desert section, that it was going to be too hot, too flat, too much desert, but it has been an amazing and beautiful place. I will always remember it as my beginning, my baby steps that are building my foundation for the Sierras which lay ahead. I truly have been in awe of this vast and ever-changing place, and thank God for bringing me here, teaching me to love and accept this wonderous creation that His son wandered through for forty days. I do believe my relationship with our creator has been strengthening during my walk in the desert, and this will help guide me towards Canada.
Less than 150 miles before I arrive at Kennedy Meadows and venture out into my beloved Sierras. So what have I learned during this past week? Take it slow & easy, and be present in every situation, every moment and every step. God has given me this time to feel his presence, to see his creation, to smell every scent along the way, to hear each bird chirp and to love all that God loves! I will forever cherish my first forty days in the wilderness, with all the highs and lows, and all the lessons I have learned. Thank you Lord for being with me through it all and loving me enough to show me who you truly are!
“Walk away quietly in any direction and taste the freedom of the mountaineer. Camp out among the grasses and gentians of glacial meadows, in craggy garden nooks full of nature’s darlings. Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.” John Muir