Saturday, September 12, 2015

WEEK NINE–Dream of hiking the Arizona Trail. (Sept. 6–12, 2015)

Goal: Hike The Arizona Trail.  It is an 800+ mile recreation trail from Mexico to Utah that connects mountain ranges, canyons, deserts, forests, wilderness areas, historic sites, trail systems, points of interest, communities, and people.   (From:

 Anyone interested in hiking the first section of the trail with me??? 

Previous post.  

Still working on the sketches for my Southwest Note Cards.  Found some more photos to use as models for the rest of the cards, but my printer ink is almost gone so I didn’t get good printouts.  Need to get to a bigger town with bigger stores and buy more ink or find a place to print out the photos to look at while I draw.  Here they are:

These are not the sketches, only the photos of what I will be sketching.

Training Days  Fifty-six through sixty-two (9/6-12, 2015,  Sun.- Sat):

What have I accomplished in the four main components of preparing for this challenge?

1) Get fit, food wise.  Candy bar with nuts, sub sandwich, Sprit, two popsicles, and 20pc McNuggets.  Bad bad bad.  I can do better.

2) Get fit, fitness wise.   July 24th I swam 1/2 mile in an hour.  This week I swam 1 mile on three days, times 1h 23 min, 1h 20min and 1h 15min.  Getting better minute by minute.  One day I kayaked the lake, all the way around it.  Not sure how far that is but was on the water about 3 hrs., got legs a little bit sunburned.  Then I took a mile hike up to an old coal mining town site.  Kool.


Saw a great bald eagle, a big vulture, and a smaller bird, maybe a Grebe.


Day 56 (Sun).  I pretty much just rested.  Ate badly.

Day 57 (Mon).  Swam 1 mile in 1 hour and 23 minutes.  It was hard to breath.  Made me very hungry.

Day 58 (Tue).  Kayaked around the lake and then took a hike of coal-mining town.  Nice day.  Felt great.  Ate right.

Day 59 (Weds).  Swam 1 mile in 1 hour and 20 minutes.  Legs sore that night.

Day 60 (Thurs).  No excuses.  Did nothing.

Day 61 (Fri.).  Swam 1 mile in 1 hour and 15 min., breaking my record.  Legs are feeling slimmer but a little sore.  I like it.  Was bad the rest of the day.  20 pc Chicken nuggets, and a coke and a popsicle.

Day 62 (Sat).  A friend arrived in town last night and we drove up on the mountain to camp last night.  Air is so good.  I fixed breakfast for the two of us and ate before weighing in.  Ughhhhh.  Next week must be better in the way I eat.

Life is good but I am getting itchy feet.  Payday is 9/16 and last day at pool is 9/25… then I head to Arizona… slowly.

3) Learn how to ward off biting bugs.   SAME. There just are not many bugs here!!!  I’m keeping a notebook of ideas for future reference.  OK, I take that back, I saw misquotes trying to get in my van this morning.  They failed.

4) Get the equipment I need.  SAME.  Joined the Facebook Arizona Trail group and began asking about electronics and equipment.  Several people are making recommendations and posting lists.  I am going to ask for copies of their spreadsheets and begin adapting my list.  What equipment I do have is in Arizona, so I can’t begin weighing things until I get there.

Weight?   Last week: 224 pounds       This week:  228 pounds    Weekly Loss/Gain = +4.     Total Loss/Gain (since July 13) = -12 pounds.   Alright I messed up this week.  Weighed myself after eating breakfast and drinking coffee and with my clothes on… so this might not be real accurate. Keep in mind, loosing weight is only a by-product of getting fit, not the goal.  I CAN DO THIS, I think!!!!

Please click on the blue bar at the top to “Join this site” and follow me.  You will get a e-mail notice when there is a new blog post.  Thank you.


My eagle.


It is really lovely here but they tell winter is a bear with lots of wind and snow and black ice.  I won’t be in Raton, NM during the winter.

Also, I am creating a set of notecards of southwestern images to sell in order to raise money for equipment or to help pay back my friends.  Please have a look at what they may look like.  I hope to have them finished and ready to mail out by Thanksgiving.  You can reserve your set of note cards now by sending a PayPal donation of $25 to  Note Cards will be sent out before Dec. 1, 2015, or delivered to you are the Winter RTR Rendezvous, your choice.  Only these advance sale cards will have my original signature.  Card sets will be available online afterward this advance sale but will have printed signature.

Sample Southwest Notecards

Thank you for doing your usual Amazon shopping using my affiliate link.

Help me a little if you can by donating to my equipment fund for the hike.  I promise to pay it forward.  There is a PayPal donation button in the top right corner, but I realize people using phone may not see that so I am repeating the button below.

Contribute to Equipment for the Trail Hike or for the Note Cards:


Who is Swankie?

My photo
Anywhere, USA, Full-Time USA traveler, United States
In 2006, I was shopping for a wheelchair. By 2007, I had new knees, better health and by 2008 a kayak. In Aug 2013, I kayaked my 49th state, Alaska, at the Holgate Glacier and in May 2014, I kayaked Hawaii, my 50th state, to celebrate my 70th Birthday and the finale to the wonderful adventure of Kayaking America? Next up... Solo Hiking the Arizona Trail, 820 miles? Maybe. Still healing from shoulder and trying to decide.