Upon waking up, I'm pleasantly surprised that there's no discernible condensation on the inner wall of the bivy. I presume it's due to my staking it out, thereby providing an airflow path.
Bivy, 2 nights in

Having camped at the oasis, I had access to several gallons of water, so I made sure to be well hydrated before heading out, and hooked the empty gallon bottles to my pack.

For the record, I don't like carrying empties out of the wilderness. It's standard practice, but I think it's ridiculous. If someone drives into the wilderness *in a car* to drop off water, it seems to me that LNT principles dictate they should clean up after themselves, instead of expecting hikers to add to their pack weight, particularly if the water is in a permanently fixed metal box.

That being said, I pack out empty bottles because people expect it, and it’s a relatively small price to pay for the extremely valuable resource of water in the wilderness.


I don't particularly know what the terrain will be like today, but I suspect it's going to be mostly flat. Heading out into the expanse, I eventually come to a trailhead, where the week before, a trail angel was making grilled cheese sandwiches for hikers.

Instead of grilled cheese, I feast on m&ms and pecans. I'm happy my bivy worked out, and I feel more efficient than I've been in the past. I sit for a fairly long time, reposing in the sentiment of sustainability. I could live out here for a while. Certainly, I would need supplies eventually, but that’s different from looking forward to the next town. It feels like I belong out here. Today is the first time I’ve felt that.

It looks like I'm going to be heading up a mountain, but I instead realize I'm moving around it. It's a low grade, so I don't mind. It takes a while, though, and my mind wanders into singing appropriate songs for the walk.
Damned dirty apes

There's a song for walking up the mountain, but as I move around it, the song changes to walking across. When I head downhill, the song adjusts accordingly. I felt a little bad for the downward path, as its song was a bit derivative.

I come upon a cattle cage, but it looks more like the cage humans were kept in the original Planet of the Apes movies. Maybe it’s not for cattle after all. Maybe it’s my arrogance that makes such assumptions.

The terrain is relatively flat, but moves slowly into ridges atop hills, and the mountains stretch in the distance all around. Off in the distance, I hear some four wheelers, but given my view, I can see there are no other hikers around. I'm walking along a dirt road, and there are some spaces a truck could park and set up a campsite.

Almost camouflaged. Stay strong, little dude. The danger has passed.

The sun is setting, but I can’t camp anywhere accessible with a truck anymore. If I walk away from the road a bit, however, I can go to the edge of the ridge and be out of view of any vehicles passing by. I don’t think there would be anyone passing by, but I’d rather stealth camp this evening.

After getting set up, I try to dig a cathole, and nearly hit a lizard. I’m concerned I hit its head and killed it, but I flipped it over to determine its status, and it flipped itself back. After flipping itself over, it didn’t move. It was terrified. I felt bad, and took note to check for lizards more intently going forward. I hadn’t seen it at all before striking the ground with my trowel, and could have easily killed it.

Here lies a hiker in a bivy

Tomorrow, I have a big day. I’ve been informed there will be Chipotle burritos awaiting me at a particular location, if I can get there in time.

If I am at a caloric deficit, Chipotle will resolve the imbalance.

Certainly, it means I have to get up very early.

For Chipotle, it’s worth it.

I can get there.