Friday, February 14, 2020

AZT prep: anxiety and Cheezits

I sat among a mess of epic proportions,  feeling slightly ill from eating trail food (OK, Cheezeits) that I was supposed to be dividing into ziplock bags. It was time for section hiking prep!

"Why don't you just have a kit?" J asked as I threw gear about. Perhaps in another lifetime, when I have a house with more than one room, this could happen. Instead I am reduced to slogging to the shed in search of a vital piece of gear.

which pack to taaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaake? 
I had forgotten how much work it takes to prepare for a section hike, especially when not done solo. TC and I fire emails back and forth. Should we stay in Superior before the hike? Where can we leave our extra clothes? Was she bringing rain pants? Should we cache water or wing it? The prep is more exhausting than the hike.

I was beset with anxiety. What if the plane couldn't get out of the airport due to the forecasted winter storm? What if a rookie was again doing the de-icing, making me miss my connection? What was this nagging sore spot on the outside of my knee? "Could be a meniscus tear," Spindrift says helpfully, sending me in a panic.

All of this may sound so terrible that you might wonder why I even hike. I do too, sometimes. But I know once I get on trail all of this will fall away. I need a social media and life break. See you on the other side, friends.

12 comments:

  1. I wonder wonder wonder if you'd have an experience like we did in the Superior Motel. Can you say one-hour rates and paper thin walls with quite the selection of condoms in the women's restroom at the nearby mexican restaurant.

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  2. Have a great time! It seems early for anywhere on the AZT, but maybe one of the southern sections with fewer mountains? Looking forward to reading about it.

    Also, I'm of the opinion that people on backpacking trips should carry rain pants always, winter or summer. They're a great wind layer and add a lot of warmth for their weight. I have no tolerance for folks with bare knees complaining about any other part of their body being cold. We're a system, people; the cold blood from your legs flows elsewhere.

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    1. It is early, but we are sticking to some lower elevations. That's why we can only do 55 miles

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  3. The "kit" comment might work if you did only one type of hiking in one type of weather and one trail length. Seems as if the gear explosion is needed to tailor the hike. Over the years you have luckily acquired a lot of gear to choose from. Will look forward to hearing about sections of AZ we know...but not from long distance hiking!!

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  4. Yesterday we Day-Hiked an 8 mile grassland section of the AZT...down south, near Mount Wrightson. It was an ascending hike that offered far views...from the Hauchuca Mountains, Mexico, Douglas mountains, and the white caps of the White Mountains to the far east. T-shirt weather :). and beautiful views of the area I grew up in.
    Box Canyon Mark

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    1. Nice! I'm definitely wanting to do more sections!

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  5. Ha, ha, this took me by surprise, Winter Princess to Desert Camel. I'm loking forward to a great read.

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  6. Arizona bound! Me too! Although I will be doing just day hikes in the Mesa area.

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