Continental Divide Trail – Day 16
May 17, 2023
Miles Today/ Total: 21.1 / 324.2
From where I camped the trail continued on a dirt road. This is the first dirt road I’ve walked in New Mexico that was actually muddy. The road was rutted in places and had some puddles that I had to walk around.
About 5 miles in I came across a water cache provided by Jetta, lots of good clean water to get me through the day. I filled up and started the climb up to Mangas Lookout. It was a pretty good climb up to the top, but the road didn’t actually go to the lookout and the trail had a section of fencing across which I interpreted as they didn’t want us up there. So I continued on and began the descent.
As I was descending the daily thunderstorm moved in and it began to sprinkle, I put on my rain gear and soon it began a full rain. The ground here was pretty dry and the rain would penetrate the first 1/4” of dirt. With each step the wet dirt (mud) would stick to your shoes and leave dry dirt underneath. Pretty soon my shoes would feel like I had 5 extra pounds on each foot. I tried to shake it and scrape it off, but as soon as I took the next step it would start accumulating again. I trudged on letting the mud build up u til it’s own weight would cause it to fall off my shoes.
I reached Davila Ranch about 3:00 pm and there were several hikers and a biker already. The place was great. It had a shower, toilet, washer/dryers, a kitchen area, and even a refrigerator with potatoes, eggs, and onions for the hikers to enjoy. I took a shower, washed my clothes and enjoyed the time off my feet.
The owner came by to check on everything and told us to eat as much as we wanted. He enjoys helping out the hikers and has built this just for that purpose.
I fried up some potatoes and onions and then ate my regular ramen & tuna dinner ( I didn’t want to carry the extra food). I was able to charge up my battery pack and then set my tent up near the facilities and turned in for the night.