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Day 61: 9/23/17 Mt.Shavano Trailhead to Salida

Miles: 16.6 Steps: 36,616 Vertical gain: 61 feet! Liquid consumed: 160 oz Wildlife: squirrels, chipmunks, Horses, cows, humans Faith in Humanity:3(!!) people stopped and offered me a ride and well wishes while road walking into Salida. Also my Mom and step dad met me in Salida and really hooked me up. Thank you! It rained quite a bit last night but thankfully there was no rain at all this morning. It was chilly but I got on my way around 6:45am. There were some super loud people on the trail at 6:15 or so that I imagined would annoy many. Me? Made me laugh a bit. My choice to camp close to the trail and I was awake anyway. I unceremoniously walked the last half mile of the Colorado Trail I’ll be on for this trip and headed down the dirt road towards Salida. Saw several groups attempting the 14ers nearby and honestly I thought they were a bit crazy. (Haha, and that’s coming from me!). There were super dark clouds already around the peaks and thunderstorms were forecast for the morning. Whatever though, Weather changes so fast in CO maybe things went just fine? I doubt it based on Weather the rest of the day where I was at, but to each their own.. Road walk was pretty nice.All downhill! It did drizzle a bit here and there so I wore my raincoat a bit. The rough road became smoother, than paved, then a pretty busy high speed limit highway, One guy on the highway flashed his lights and shook his finger at me really hard. Not sure what that meant, but whatever! Two guys stopped and offered me a ride into town. I declined both times but really appreciated their offer. They both have encouraging comments which was nice. I continued on the busy highway for quite a ways then I arrived: at Sonic. Sonic, in my opinion is probably the grossest of fast food but the next place was pretty far down the road so I indulged and had a burger, tater tots and a corn dog. Actually not bad. Pretty sure the guy gave me $1 less change than I should have gotten. I even corrected him but whatever it’s only a dollar I guess... More road walking, this time with sidewalks for another hour or so and then my Mom and Step Dad Paul picked me up. Actually one car stopped and said they saw me the previous day and wondered what I was up to. Then they asked me what religion I was and said I was open minded which really seemed to disappoint them. I love everyone, but here’s so advice: Never talk Politics or religion with someone you just met! You’ll always be disappointed if they have a different view than you do. Just judge them on character and personality and maybe you’ll respect them further down the road of you find out their religion or politics differs from yours. Still very nice of them to say hello, thanks! Anyway, I jumped in the rental car in the backseat and first we went to the hotel and they didn’t let us check in early. Oh well, so I changed and we got back in the car. We walked around downtown Salida going on a couple stores. I managed to somehow lose my spoon so my mom was nice enough to buy me a new titanium fancy one. They actually would have been willing to buy me more things but honestly I carry too much as it is! I don’t need anything else. I did look around but quickly decided there was really no need for anything. Thanks so much for the generosity though! It really started raining hard so we gradually made lite Way back to the car. Up next? Resupply! Mom and Paul were quite amused that I shop in the opposite fashion as most: I look for the highest calorie items possible! More fat? Perfect! They were nice enough to buy their 35 year old son a few days worth of food. Thank you! Now we checked into the hotel and I showered, did laundry, repackaged groceries, dried out my gear, etc. they both commented about how busy I was as they relaxed. I was a bit jealous, but when you live in the woods you need to get your town errands done! I’m so lucky: next we went to a steakhouse! This place was pretty unique: 2 menu items; sliced sirloin or prime rib. With a small salad and baked potato and slice of bread. The 20oz prime rib was fantastic and the place was pretty cheap for a steak place! Many times I find myself dissatisfied eating at a steakhouse due to high prices and small portions, but this place was amazing! We went to the grocery store again to buy desert and I crushed a pint of Ben n Jerry’s! So much food!!!! Thank you so much fir everything I really appreciate it!!!!!

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