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Day 151: 12/22/17  Starting the Arizona Trail!!!!!

Miles: 17.4 Steps: 37,412 Vertical gain: Strava Knows!!! Liquid consumed: 100 oz. Wildlife: Lots and lots of tracks, but only actually saw a few bunnies scurrying away from me. Faith in Humanity: Broken record, but thank you so much Lynn and Richard! So much hospitality! Well, today is the day I’m getting back on the trail with a backpack on my back and I won’t be reentering civilization until 2018! 11 days in the backcountry, and I’m excited! I woke up, showered and packed my bursting and overflowing backpack. So much food! Had some juice and lemon cake for breakfast which was really tasty. Next up, Richard drive me about an hour to the Nkrthern Terminus of the Arizona Trail! I debated a few options last night of what route to pursue, and decided it’d be really cool to start hiking again at the UT/AZ state line and start heading South. Thanks so much for the ride! So kind too, Richard said if anything happens that he’d be happy to pick me up at Jacob Lake. Thank you! So, in total I skipped 85 miles from the Zion tunnel to the start of the Arizona Trail. Honestly, I’m ok with this. My knee was really bothering me on the bicycle and I’m not sure I really had another option to Kanab. And why skip the northern terminus of a big trail? I won’t ever deny skipping this portion and to be honest, I may skip a ton more before starting up The a Appalachian Trail in early spring, but no concrete plans, just have to see what happens. Anyway, I started hiking the freaking Arizona Trail! How cool is that? I’m excited about this if you can’t tell! And then there was snow. It states as only on the north facing slopes in patches but I’d say I walked 80% or more of the day today on completely snow covered trail. Not Deep, a couple of inches in the deepest places, but definitely enough to cause a bit of a slower pace and some route finding confusion. Not too bad though, ended up doing about 17 miles or so with a start at almost 10am, so I’ll take it. I love backpacking! I’m not trying to be a hater on cycling, but after cycling for a week or so, this is why I love hiking: 1) Music! I feel really weird putting in ear buds while riding a bike, so I don’t. I love music and hiking on a trail lets me listen all the time! 2) no cars! Yay! Sure sometimes on trails there are Road walks with traffic, but overall there’s no cars. Today the trail was 100% single track and amazing. 3) my Butt doesn’t hurt horribly! 4)you can take a break and use the restroom anywhere! On the side of the road cycling you’re quite exposed. 5) camping: I’m not right next to a road! So many benefits to this! Do I hate cycling or am I annoyed because the bike fit isn’t right and I just need to make a few adjustments and things will be much better? I just don’t know!

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