From hiker heaven to the Oasis water cache
After wrapping up some loose odds and ends, I’m finally ready to leave hiker heaven. “Do you have a donation box?” I ask Donna.
“Over there,” she points to an ugly vase back in the corner of the garage. The Saufleys can’t possibly be covering their costs. I wonder if it is the transformation they appreciate – watching tired, filthy hikers coming to their respite, only to leave refreshed, clean(ish), and in good spirits. I feel like I might be ready to go on. We get a hug and our picture taken, then it’s time to go. Dimples and Snake Eyes start off with us today – can’t go wrong with some good company.
Based on the reports and hearsay from other hikers about the horrible, dry desert coming up, I keep expecting to be walking through blazing hot, rocky wastes. This hasn’t happened yet. Today we take off into hills that are golden and green. The land here looks rumpled, like an old quilt, patchworked in greens and yellows here, blues tans and greys out in the distance.