out of the woods

June 22 2012. It was getting time to quit and now I had a big view to the east.. I noticed a black PVC pipe crossing under the road in a culvert so I followed it up and came to a spring and a place to camp. The wind was strong out of the west and it looked like a storm so I set up my tarp against the storm and explored up the draw, realized it was the same rock draw I had seen from a distance. I did not have a lot of “juice” left in me but I did try and gain some elevation to see if I could gain cell phone reception but no luck. I went back to camp and went to bed early, no fire. I saw one pick up truck on the road and they stopped for a long time on the road below me and I thought they were going to follow my tracks and come visit but they eventually drove on. I had a good nights sleep even though it blew hard and rained some.
Later when I had got back to Ekone Ranch I was looking over some of Ray’s maps and he had camped in the same place on one of his adventures and he called this place; “good spirit camp.” I would have to agree; it was a very beautiful property, Good water, rich dry land pasture and that intriguing rock canyon that I did not have the energy to explore! I felt extremely blessed to be able to camp there and silently thanked who ever owned the place for not shutting me out with locks or the no, no, no, everything signs! My one and only night in the Horse Heaven Hills was worth every ounce of effort I had spent getting there!
As I walked on toward Bickleton the sky was spitting some rain and it was the first time I needed Reed’s rain coat. When I got into town I asked an old timer on the street, where was the best place to eat? He pointed to the store, so that’s where I went. I ordered lunch and called Jeff and Denise. I did carry with me a clean pair of pants and a clean shirt but I thought maybe no one would believe that I had walked 20 plus miles cross country if I looked super clean so I left my camp clothes on to help confirm my story, and they had the look alright!
The folks at the Bickleton Store and Café were friendly, there telephone had unlimited long distance and was a kind of service to their customers, in part because there was no cell phone service in the area. Everyone knows everyone in Bickleton and I was informed that they knew I was coming before I got there. They said someone had called in from Pine Creek Road and said there was a man walking down the road with a knap sack on his back and “he had to have been, coming out of the woods”. That was me alright fresh out of the woods!

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