Date- January 2, 2019
Elevation- 13 ft
Distance Traveled Today- 3.9 miles
Distance Traveled Total- 30.7
Weather/Temp- sunny/mid 80s
Pain level- none
Wildlife encounters- None
Days without shower- 4
Days without laundry- 4
Hunger/craving- A rack of ribs sounds nice
CatFox Status- Unbelievably good
Got a later start than intended, around 8:15, but that’s just how late I naturally slept in.
The first almost 2 miles out of camp were nothing but axel grease mud and some muddy water trekking. I have no idea how I haven’t fallen over the past two days. Too many small Cypress to catch myself on, probably.
There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, and temps were soaring again by 9 am. I could manage half a mile at time before needing to cool off and rest.
After 2 miles, the mud finally quit and became solid ground. I can’t remember the last time I was so relieved to see normal trail. A half mile after that we hit a wide open swamp buggy road and I could finally set Katana down.
For the next mile she was hiking on my heels, in front of me, and beside me. I can’t even convey to you how amazingly happy this made me. I had tears in my eyes as she hiked with me like nothing had changed over the thousands of miles we’ve shared together, and I’m choking up now as I write this and think back. She’s going to be alright. When trail conditions are good, she’ll smash it like she always has.
We reached the rest stop a little after 11am, and I spent $10 on vending machine water. There are hundreds of people coming and going through here by the hour, and Katana has drawn her fair share of attention. I have no intention of going any further today. The plan is to drink as much as possible to compensate for the last few days, and then stealth camp somewhere nearby.
There are faucets by the pavilions outside, and I finally got my shoes looking back to normal. It feels good not to have the pressure of time hanging over my head on this thru. No winter to beat. No extreme cold weather to worry about. You just have to get to the next meal, the next water, or the next good thing.