We are done with paddling the River. The ordeal for today was a 9.5 mile hike via Lower Red Lakes Canyon Trail with about a 2600 foot climb. I am happy I brought my 85 Liter pack for this leg of the journey. It has a better suspension to carry more weight more comfortably. Also i was able to pack my packraft inside the pack. Once all my gear was loaded, my pack felt like it weighed 70lbs. That included the 9 lb boat, paddles, PFD, boat repair kit, a fire pan, and a dry bag filled with our poop. Yes!! Poop. Aka, human shit. The permit that we got from Canyonlands National Park in order to float the River, requires that we haul out our own shit. Apparently this section of the River sees a lot of recreational use. Hence, if everyone pooped on the beaches, there would be only shitty beaches and no where to camp. Fair enough! We don’t mind hauling our own shit around.
So the climb took longer than the three hours i expected, taking five hours. Apparently, you are only as fast as your slowest hiker. Sonya was struggling on the hike out, and Pete and I did not want to leave her and Dave behind because they had no map and did not know the route. As long as everyone makes it out safe was the point.
We eventually made it out and into the privately owned campsite, Needles Outpost, one mile outside the park, where there are showers, a snack store, and wifi. The showers were much appreciated, as our next shower is about 8 days away.
After sorting gear, Pete, Cuban B, and i finally have the gear we will have for the rest of the Hayduke Route. Dave and Sonya are taking our vehicle and other gear with them and storing it in their home in Colorado, where we plan on picking up after Hayduke. For here on out we are on our own for good until Capitol Reef, where we have other friends meeting us for a section hike. Our next leg is five days and takes us to Hite, where we have our next food cache.