Day 3 – 4/16
Miles 18.8
I’ve picked a bad place for my “bed” and I’m paying for it. I made sure to make an anatomical hip divot in the dirt, but there’s a bit too much slope which puts all my weight on my already sore sides. After tossing and turning all night, I get up around 6:30 and start hiking.

The scenery has changed dramatically from yesterday. What was dry low shrub desert, is now an evergreen forest. The dry air and the smell of pines brings me back to Colorado. Whatever discontent I had from the nights rest is now gone.

There are a number of fellow thru hikers at the general store when I arrive to do my first resupply. Many of them are sprawled out on the patio with all of their stuff laid out while they reorganize. I stake out my claim and head inside to load up on food for the next four days. When I get back outside one of the more experienced hikers is helping some people sort through their gear. I hear “no you don’t need a full size bottle of soap” and chuckle to myself. I’m also surprised to hear from another hiker that he has talked to four people that have already decided to quit, one within the first 12 miles!

Eventually, I head off back to the trail. A few miles later the scenery changes again, and I find myself in an area where there was recently a wildfire. Nature sensing its scarred skin has attempted to cover up with a blanket of flowers. Strolling through the flowers, I unexpectedly come upon my first big panorama and let out “huzzah!” I stop and stare for a bit and note how dry it looks to the north east. I hope I’m not headed there.

Luckily, the trail follows the ridge for now and doesn’t go into what I’ve dubbed “the wasteland.” As I cruise along, I hear some scuffling feet behind me. Looking back, I see a tall skinny guy flying down the trail. I usually have pretty good pace with my long legs but this guy has me beat. I chat with him and learn he’s recently had his 40th birthday and wants to do 40 miles today(on his second day). As he zooms off, I realize he’s the fist person to pass me, and I am reminded there are always bigger fish in the sea.

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