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 The Trek: The Journals

•
Team: South
Lorie McGraw
Thursday, August 22
Flagstaff and showers!
Flagstaff

Tonight we are in a KOA Kampground in Flagstaff, very welcome because they have showers and flush toilets, and a laundry (clean clothes!), but there is no pool and the whole place is pretty run down. Certainly not a high-range adventure, but there are showers and I am happy about that.
We should have Internet access soon, we have been without it for over a week. In the past week we left New Mexico and entered Arizona, but an Arizona that I have never seen before. In 2000 my family and I went on a trip through AZ that was wonderful, from I-40 north thought the Grand Canyon and into Utah, then back though Monument Valley and home. All beautiful “redrock” vistas, very dry and desert-like.
But there is far more to Arizona than the desert country I am finding out. This past week we have been over some of the most stunning Ponderosa Pine and Aspen forests that I have ever seen. The Mogollon Rim is a huge plateau that rises above the desert floor in central AZ. What a magnificent area and what stunning vistas! We went to Woods Canyon Lake, a lovely place to visit, but wayyyyy too crowded. The lady at the information kiosk said that they stock the lake weekly with fish, so lots of people must be using it.

That is one reliable component about the public lands that we are crossing and using: it has an impact on the urban folks who use it for fishing and boating, and just as a way to get away from the heat of the valley and get some coolness in the higher elevations. The animals use it that way, too. I did saw lots of deer and a cow elk walked out right in front of me as I went in search of a phone. There were elk warning signs everywhere. I think that in some of these counties the elk easily outnumber the people. The animals were very active in the coolness of the pine forest, and Abert’s squirrels and golden-mantled squirrels abound. Golden mantles look like chipmunks, but are larger and do not have stripes that go up onto their heads and face like chipmunks do. My son nicknamed them “Speedy Squirrels”, and they remain “Speedies” to this day.
I did find out from the ranger that there is a very nice lake further down called Knoll Lake that is less crowded with good fishing. Something for my family and I to do in the future, I would venture to say. Please check the journal entries below to find out some of what we did in the past week or so.

I am so excited! The postal truck just delivered a package to me from my husband Jerry and my kids, and my good friend Brent Garvin. They sent me my sleeping bag and a fleece liner (the one that we have is a mummy bag, which does not sleep well with someone of my girth and makes me think that a bear has grabbed me, so now I have my good flat one). They also sent me my fleece hat (I could have used it last night) and Brent sent me a fleece headband with an Order of the Arrow fox on it! The nights will start to get nippier as we get out of August and continue north. So those will be welcome indeed. But the most welcome was the letters and homemade cookies from my family (and Brent, too). How I miss everyone. Many of the folks on the team have cell phones, and they get to talk to loved-ones on a regular basis. I have to rely on occasional motels to be able to hear the voices that I love. That is the hardest thing about this trip, separation from your family and friends. My son wrote to me and told me that his male gecko died. I wish I were there for the funeral. It is tough having a pet die. And I know that the boys miss their mom as much as I miss them.

The other good news is that my parents, Pat and Norma McGraw, are coming in tonight from Vancouver Washington and visit us here in Flagstaff. I have not seen them since last December, so I am thrilled to be able to spend a little time with them. They will be able to attend the special events that we will be going to and I will be able to catch up on family stuff. I can hardly wait.

This morning when we came into the trailer park (no real places to put tents), Jessica and I were thrilled to be greeted by the sweetest little cat, barely more than a kitten. A dark tiger tabby, she is also a Manx, with just a bobbed tail about 1 inch long. I found out that her name is Teasel. She let us hold her and followed us around. She even helped me put my tent up by attacking all of the moving pieces to make sure that they were properly subdued. Then she rolled herself up in the netting part of the tent and jumped out at me. Oh, how I miss my cats.

We are all going to Outback Steakhouse tonight. Yay! Clean clothes, clean hair, steak, and my folks coming to visit. Only seeing my kids and Jerry would make it better, but this is just about perfect.
for Thursday, August 22
North South Both




Biographical
•
Team: South
Lorie McGraw
Lorie McGraw

   >> more...



List of All Journal Entries
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Saturday, September 21
Lorie McGraw
The Call of the Wild
   >> more...

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Monday, September 16
Lorie McGraw
Rugged Beauty
   >> more...

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Sunday, September 15
Lorie McGraw
Calf Creek and Grand Staircase
   >> more...

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Sunday, September 8
Lorie McGraw
Lake Powell and Rainbow Bridge
   >> more...

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Saturday, September 7
Lorie McGraw
Rain in the Desert
   >> more...

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Friday, September 6
Lorie McGraw
A River and a Rainbow
   >> more...

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Wednesday, September 4
Lorie McGraw
Condors and Rock Art
   >> more...

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Tuesday, September 3
Lorie McGraw
Trekkers Return and an Old Cabin
   >> more...

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Sunday, September 1
Lorie McGraw
Hopi, Navajo, and The North Rim
   >> more...

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Saturday, August 31
Lorie McGraw
A hike, a bike, and web frustrations
   >> more...

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Friday, August 30
Lorie McGraw
The Big Ditch
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Wednesday, August 28
Lorie McGraw
A New Job
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Tuesday, August 27
Lorie McGraw
Halfway Point
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Monday, August 26
Lorie McGraw
Doing a job, or not?
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Sunday, August 25
Lorie McGraw
Red Rock
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Sunday, August 25
Lorie McGraw
Sunset Crater and CO Bar Ranch
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Thursday, August 22
Lorie McGraw
Flagstaff and showers!
   >> more...

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Wednesday, August 21
Lorie McGraw
Skunks and a practical joke
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Sunday, August 11
Lorie McGraw
Mountain Lake and a Visitor
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Tuesday, August 6
Lorie McGraw
Silver City, Here We Come!
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Monday, August 5
Lorie McGraw
Vanilla Trees at Iron Creek Camp, Gila National Forest
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Sunday, August 4
Lorie McGraw
On to the Gila Forest
   >> more...

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Friday, August 2
Lorie McGraw
Out of the (electronic) Darkness
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Friday, August 2
Lorie McGraw
The South Team is hosted at a Ghost Town in NM
   >> more...

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Wednesday, July 31
Lorie McGraw
First Day Highlight
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