Sunday, July 20, 2014

Day 41: A&M Reservoir to Hills Above Bison Basin Road

A heavy curtain of smoke shrouded the Basin, obscuring our view. The filtered sunlight softened the harsh desert landscape, enhancing the golden green tones of the sage, rabbit brush, and desert grasses. Light purple lupine and tiny yellow flowers were also scattered among the brush. 

Three antelope gaped at us as we trudged along the sandy trail. Then, with the instinct of the hunted, they cantered away up the hill. 

Our feet sank into the soft sand with every step. Fine grained sand poured in through our thin mesh shoes. 

Shortly after lunch we caught up with Otter, a three time CDT hiker. 

We climbed into the rolling low hills of the Basin, passing the first trees we had seen since Rawlins. Grassy hills stretched in every direction. We passed a band of ten wild horses, who were all standing on a ridge watching us as we hiked by. Cattle grazed near a small spring. 

Jeff drove in and found camping on a flat, grassy expanse in the hills, then hiked back to meet us. A lone black mustang was grazing peacefully on the far side of the hilltop when we arrived. 

The winds gathered force all evening.  The truck rocked with each gust of wind. We braced ourselves against the blasts and quickly fell asleep, exhausted after another 30 mile day. 

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