Day 6- Hurkey Creek

Route- Oak Grove Campground to Hurkey Creek Campground

Route Miles- 41 

Total Miles- 196

Evening hilltop, plus some cloud cover

Me after climbing the hill

Waking up in the early dawn with the Canadians, I realized I’m losing track of days in that delightful summer way. Each day just becomes about itself instead of what’s next. None of us were very talkative morning folk; I hope it wasn’t awkward that I didn’t say much. They left before the sun, and we squeezed in a picture. I haven’t asked them to send it to me yet. I did not leave before the sun, my morning routines are a little slower. Apparently 2 hours is just how it goes for me. And Andomeda required some minor tinkering to prevent my bags from rattling. Tim, one of the guys has been following them in a car and stayed to chat a bit. He’s been taking side trips to interesting places and then bringing his friends fresh veggies and beer in the evenings. They shared the beer with me, and I was able to contribute a lime! I’m glad I encountered the Canadians. 
All of the rural counties out here seem to run regular and cheap busses for commuting to the metro areas, and they have bike racks. I’m not loving the desert incredible much, and I’m a *bit* behind my expected pace, so I think I’ll be skipping ahead after Palmdale (I hear the head winds are brutal in one of the country’s largest wind farm areas). 

The hills today were long and hard, especially going up to Anza. There wasn’t really a shoulder, par for the course in CA, limited pull outs, and Saturday morning tourist traffic. I got buzzed by a billion douche trucks with dirt bikes in the back, many of whom seemed annoyed at my lack of engine. Most gave me room, but a couple honked. I choose to interpret that as encouragement. 😎 I’m sure it gets even harder later. But I made it up in one piece and stopped to watch the motocross event from the highway. The course was interesting, a small layered loop on a hillside, bikes leaping all around the place, following each other over jumps and tight corners. The strangest part was watching the water spraying truck out wetting the track, to lay down dust and add traction to keep it safe, I presume. But this is the freakin desert, ya’ll. There are signs everywhere asking people to conserve water, and instead they’re just dumping it out on gravel, making mud and adding to hillside erosion. Hmmm…

Motocross hill, look closely to see some flyers and find the water truck

In Anza, I found myself hit and grumpy and didn’t really find a place to nap. So I waited out the heat in the library and a Dairy Queen. I managed to push on up another steep climb. The traffic was much better, and I was able to gut it out up a hill I thought I might have to hitch up. I climbed so high that I found myself in a lovely cool ponderosa forest. T felt like home. Maybe that is one of my insights, which is not unexpected, that I love my home and my connection with the land in Montana. 

I ended the night in a noisy and boisterous campground. Instead of bothering me, I found myself happy. People are getting outside and taking their kids. Maybe they could bring less electricity, but hey, they’re sleeping in the dirt just like me. And all the cute little kiddos running around have me rocking a terrible baby fever. Note to self: an acceptable use for bear bells- attach to toddlers for easy location. 

Mountain Sunset, feels like home

Insights from today:

– Midday naps are amazing. I should keep a yoga mat in my classroom for some corpse pose at lunch to refresh and rejuvenate. 

-I don’t like not having a plan for food each day, and just waiting to see what I find. That’s what we did at home this year. It’s stressful and we end up eating less healthy than we could. So I’d like to plan meals, get home from a long day of work and just make what’s for dinner without it being an added trial.