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Day 1 in Arizona

I left Tahoe at 2pm, leaving the snow, my skis and a crazy winter behind for Arizona. I made it to Kingsman, AZ in the rental car and camped next to it on a secluded dirt road. From there the drive south crossed my route from last year which brought back some memories but the drive was largely uneventful (thankfully). I dropped off the rental in Tucson, mailed some resupply boxes out and then began the process of getting to the trail. I walked through one of the finer resorts and golf courses in the area and arrived at the highway. I stuck my thumb out and immediately got a ride a third of the way. While thumbing it for round two a cop pulled over and flipped his lights on. He said it was illegal to hitch where I was standing (on a standard small state highway). He took my ID and called it on. It took so long for him to get a response that he began asking if I had any warrants. Finally everything came back clear and he realized I was no criminal. This is when his demeanor changed and he gave me a ride nearly all the way to the trail and as far as his jurisdiction would allow. The unique thing about the ride is that I had to ride in the back behind the bars and with a door that would not open from the inside. Luckily he let me out and I began hiking south. Being back on the trail was amazing. The sun was shining and the wildflowers were blooming. Deer skipped through the fields and rabbits scampered about. This was a spring you only see in the Disney movie Bambi. The stress of planning, packing and training was forgotten for a few miles and I could enjoy immersing myself in nature.

The plan is to log about 250 miles over the next week+ en route to the southern terminus of the Arizona Trail. If everything goes well and I am happy with my gear, I will begin hiking north about as fast as my legs will carry me. If everything is not going well, I will reevaluate and come up with a new plan. Let the new adventure begin!

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