Day 160, September 10, 2012

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I woke up on day 160 next to highway 95 between Havasu and Parker AZ. It was pretty overcast still and a little damp from the rain that fell through the night. It was about 7:30 and I wanted to get up and going.  I packed up and got myself ready. I stretched and did all the other morning stuff. I snacked on a granola bar and headed out of the dry creek area and onto the 95.
After walking for about a half mile my right foot was killing me. I didn't realize how bad it was the day before, but they were hurting today. I pulled off my show and my toe had a nasty blister! The bottom of my foot also had a really sensitive spot that felt like an incoming blister that just hadn't developed and filled with fluid yet. I ended up putting bandaids on them. Then I took some spare socks and cut the foot part off with my knife to slip them over my foot for more padding. I duct taped it a few times around to give it a little more cushion. When I took off walking, the pain was not all the way gone, but it was much better.
     I walked from there south and it was mostly downhill. The highway veered closer and closer to the Colorado river the further south I walked. I came to a bend where the highway actually went over the river and it was such a pretty spot. I stopped there to have some golf fishes (care package from the Vegas girls) and I took some pictures also. I sat on the railing of the bridge for maybe 10 minutes.
When I left there I walked up the hill on the other side and it was a windy steep climb. The view was better and better the higher up I went. I reached the top and then it was a steep downhill grade that dropped into Parker dam, a small town with a little store.
It was getting pretty warm by now so I stopped under the overhang in the shade to sit down right in front of the store. I sat on my sleeping bag and rested. I stretched my calves a little there as well. My left calve was cramped for some reason.
    I left there and it was a moderately flat walk for the next couple miles. It brought me now right along side of the river again. Man it was so pretty and a vibrant blue color. It was almost like tropical waters. It looked refreshing. I would have jumped in, but honestly I would rather keep moving and cover the most ground I could. The only swim I have in mind is the big blue of the pacific.
The road turned west again along with the river, and it started to climb. I was getting hot on the uphill walk so I stopped to use the frog tog cooling pad that the Vegas girls brought me. That thing was awesome! I put it around the back of my neck and it felt very refreshing.
    I came to another mini summit when the road curved left and then back downhill. I decided to take another break there on the railing along side the road. A little truck passed by me and made a u turn after driving past me for maybe a quarter mile. He came up next to me and pulled off. He handed me $10 out of the passenger window. He said for me to enjoy a nice dinner tonight. I was lifted from the mans generosity. I thanked him and he turned around again to continue in his way.
I felt a small blister was starting to develope on my other foot now too. So I pulled my shoe off and wrapped my foot up with some sports tape. I walked again from there to hit the last 8 miles or so to get to Parker AZ.
     My feet were definitely hurting every step, but it wasn't enough pain to need to stop. More of an uncomfortable annoyance than anything. I walked up and down the windy road further down now. It was sort of weaving west and south back and forth.
Finally I hit a flat where the road was straight and going dead south now. My right knee began popping during the last stretch and a couple times caused a sharp pain where I would sit down quickly and rub it. I was a little nervous as I had never really felt that kind of pain before. It wasn't extremely bad, but it felt like it was deep inside the knee. I was definitely worried a bit.
I took plenty of breaks and walked slow on the last few miles. Finally I had made it to Parker! I was exhausted, starving, my body hurt all over, but I was relieved to be there. I went straight towards a McDonald's. Before I got there another car pulled over and it was another guy who handed me $5 out of his window. He seemed in a hurry and sped off before I could get a good picture.
     I got into McDonald's and was now less than 1 miles from California. Wow! I couldn't believe it! I decided to splurge and have a big dinner like the guy that gave me the $10 told me to do. So I feasted! I ordered a bunch of food off the dollar menu and just went to town. Man it was nice to stuff my face for a change from always being hungry.
I sat there for maybe an hour and then wanted to get to the state line to find a place to sleep. I walked through Parker and over another bridge that crossed the Colorado. The bridge was sketchy with no shoulder and I just went for it. A few cars got pissed but I honestly didn't care. I was beat tired and needed to cross it somehow.
      I got to the other side where I walked another half mile or so and got to the state line! I walked up to the California sign just as it was getting real dark. I made it! Wow. I walked all the way without any rides from the Atlantic ocean to California now. I couldn't believe it. I'm now at the homestretch to get to the pacific ocean!
    I stood and glared at the sign for a few moments just trying to take it in. Then I was ready to crash. There was an old skeleton of a brick building right on the Arizona side of the sign. So I walked over to it and took my gear inside there. It was just enough walls to keep me out of sight. There was a lot of broken glass all around but I found a spot where it was somewhat clear on the cement. I made my bed there and laid down. My body was hurting. But my adrenaline were allowing me to move past that pain and enjoy the moment. It was a sweet night of resting and knowing tomorrow I will step into, and begin to walk the last state of my voyage. Wow!


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