From the Mazatzal Wilderness we descended into and out of washes, sometimes following vague routes.
In one instance we were not sure if we were on the trail anymore since the passage did not resemble anything we had encountered before. But after more traversing through washes, we finally came to an AZT marker that confirmed we were right on track despite our doubts.
We usually slept under the wide open sky unless there was potential rain on the horizon. In such cases, we had a tarp that we put up for protection from the elements.
I love waking up throughout the night and noting how the earth is constantly moving in relationship to stars and constellations. I could usually make out how close we were to sunrise by where Orion and other star clusters had shifted over time.
Even the Cacti were in celebration of this special time of year.
Crossing under Highway 87 at Sunflower, we climbed up and over into the Four Peaks Wilderness with grand views of Roosevelt Lake.
Earlier in the year a fire raged through this trail segment. However, water was flowing plentifully despite the lack of green vegetation.
Tarantulas were common along our journey. We were even amazed to find a giant centipede hunting through some deciduous leaves.
The trails were wonderfully maintained with constant views in all directions.
Rumor had it that a tropical depression was coming into this region the next day.
Therefore we wanted to get to Highway 188 before dark set in.
Our plan was to hitch north 17 miles into Tonto Basin which had a small store and a motel to wait out the storm.
However, when we got to the Roosevelt Lake Bridge next to the dam, we simply could not get a ride in the limited day light that still existed. Therefore, we spent the night and tried to hitch the next morning. After the second car went by, it crossed the bridge and decided to turn around. However, the gentleman in the car was heading southbound but insisted that he could give us a ride into Globe which had every service a hiker could dream of. That sounded wonderful. Within minutes the sky let loose and it began to pour rain for two days straight.