Starting the Climb

Still hot & dry but we are easing out of the Sonoran desert. We are nearly 50 miles from Payson, Arizona on Highway 87. The views are growing more beautiful by the moment as I continue my 3 mile per hour pace. The desert seems to be greening up today and a proliferation of Saguaro cactus fill the hills along the highway. The road leads me to Four Peaks Mountain for tonight’s campsite. Cactus seems to take human form as I spend so much time with them. I see dancing couples, madonnas, noses, bunny ears, and lots of waving hands. Cactus seemed a happy bunch to me, but fellow marcher “Jane” from NYC says the cactus all seem to have their hands up as if being robbed … funny how we all have our own way of seeing those Cacti.
The elevation change is coming. We will climb to more than 5000 feet in the next 3 days.  Elevation in Phoenix was about 900 feet.

We marchers are a tired bunch with limited water & services available. This should be a challenging 3 days.
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