Day 30: Park Wash Roadwalk

Saturday May 20, 20.0mi/32.2km

Bullrush Gorge (472.9/6180ft) to Start of Buckskin Gulch (492.9/5300ft) (UT)

Since we camped in a less-than-ideal campsite (bottom of a valley, not under trees, etc), we both woke up to wet tents. It was 6:45am and the sun wouldn’t hit us for at least an hour, so we packed up most of our stuff and walked down the canyon to a sunny spot to dry our stuff. Yard sale!

After 30 minutes of drying, we packed up again and had an uneventful walk down Park Wash. Occasionally there was a dirt road thru the wash.

This water source was a nice surprise, and I thought it was a pretty clever use of an old tractor tire.

Cows were everywhere. They usually moooved out of the way, but these blocked our path.

Hi cows!

There was an old “cowboy shack” nearby so I went to check that out.

It was a beautiful morning for hiking, and we fortunately found a cattle track, which was better than walking in the soft sand of the wash.

Further down, the wash was easier to walk with firmer sand.

I loved seeing this old-timey windmill. It was attached to a motor to pump water to a basin for the cows.

The landscape was surprisingly green in this area.

Our dirt road joined a bigger dirt road, and I had to take a photo of the junction. Who names these things?!?

We stopped for lunch at another nice green area, and watched the puffy clouds get bigger.

All afternoon it was a nice easy roadwalk, thru increasingly cloudy skies.

I heard thunder and looked behind me…yikes. I walked faster.

Ahead of me still looked pretty nice.

We had roadwalking for about 3 hours, with the sound of thunder echoing around the valley.

Eventually the entire sky was covered in thunderclouds and there was lightning, wind, and a few drops of rain. No photos during that chaos, it was a challenge just to stay warm. Around 4:30pm we crossed the big paved highway 89, which leads to Kanab.

Most Hayduke hikers would exit here and hitch to town, but we are hiking thru another 2 days to the resort village of Jacob’s Lake, AZ. Shadow has a friend in Kanab who is picking us up there, which is really generous of her, it’s like a 45 minute drive!

We crossed the highway and went thru the huge wildlife fence, which had a complicated latch mechanism.

We camped a half mile later, at the start of Buckskin Gulch.

We setup our tents and had dinner, and then an hour later, the dry wash became wet! I heard flowing water, and emerged from my tent to see the leading edge of a small flood coming down the wash. The rainstorm had been in the mountains 4 hours ago, and the runoff had finally arrived down here. Amazing!

Tomorrow is our last day in Utah, then it’s on to Arizona!

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