Hayduke Day 22

April 20

One of the more unexpected challenges I’ve faced so far is the struggle to leave my hotel room in the morning, on those days I’ve slept in town. I couldn’t find the motivation today to get out of bed, so it was a very late start for the day. Something about having to wake up and immediately hitchhike sours me.So as I left Escalante, I didnt even bother sticking out my thumb–I just walked along, talking to myself, trying to find some mind-hack that would prove resourceful. I pretended I was on the CDT, famous for it’s long road walks, and what I was actually doing was covering some of my daily route. I looked at the hills and 50 mile bench off to the south, admiring its snow-faced wall. I studied the minor little washes coming down perpendicular to the road and spied little spots that would make excellent little stealth camping sites, so close to town. The five miles to Hole-in-the-Rock road were over soon enough, and when it came time to turn down into Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument I was in a better mood and had no trouble finding a ride the remaining 30 miles back to trail.

Then it was almost immediately up a couple thousand feet and into the cold alpine air. I had to make my way past a couple of snow chutes, and topped off on the broad Kaiparowits Plateau above where the views were excellent.

I managed to get by today, even though it might have been the least thrilling day so far, but that’s how thru-hiking goes. Sometimes the scenery just isn’t there, and your mind doesnt want to hold your hand throughout the day, so you bounce along, untethered.Late afternoon brought some interesting low light among the sage brush, and as evening came on I entered Monday Canyon and found a nice small plot of land under a pine tree, so I’ll get to sleep like a king on the soft ground tonight. Brief rain washes against my tent and harmless little squalls move up the tree-covered canyon walls and blow past the rock above.

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