I’ve entered a transitional zone over the past several days. The landscape has alternated between peaceful open forests of Jeffrey and Pinyon pine as well as barren, shadeless high desert. This desert has a feel to it that other, past desertscapes have lacked. For one, the scenery is amazing. Because this is relatively high desert, with elevations greater than 4500 feet, I have endless views of the Sierra Nevada to the north and the lower plateaus to the south and east. The colors are rusty reds and browns spotted with flat green and a tan, sandy treadway. The skies here are a deeper blue with scatterings of clouds now sweeping the sky. The wind here will stop you in your tracks and huge, sudden gusts have nearly blown me off trail.
Physically, I’m feeling great. I’m probably in the best condition since Day One. The fungal infection continues to improve and is only an occasional irritation and things like blisters and sore muscles haven’t been a problem. I put in 25 miles yesterday and will probably come close to 30 today. My days are long. I usually start walking between 6-7 AM and stop between 7:30-8:30 PM with 15, 30 and 75 minutes breaks/naps scattered throughout the day. Tomorrow I reach Onyx and then 50 more miles to Kennedy Meadows and the start of the high Sierra.