Victor is dusty and looks interesting. I want to have a beer in some old western saloon, but I have some beer for tonight and I just can't stop.
I find the first dirt south and hang a left down a canyon heading for Canyon City. Wow.
The road is fast and I'm utterly alone. Rip it up and enjoy the top. Later on the views are so overwhelming and the road narrows and drops off steeply. Steep is going to be a theme.
I hit Canyon City and hang a right on 50 I think.
Pavement along the Arkansas river. The sun is lowering in the sky and in the deep canyons it's cool. I make camp with out trees and have to go to ground. I much prefer to sleep in my hammock but I'm happy.
I make camp quickly in the fading light. Then wash up in the Arkansas, it's cold. I dunk, soap up, dunk and dry. Feels good to be clean and cool in the wind. The river is full, bank to bank and threatened to sweep me away. A cold beer tastes so good and the meager store sandwich is better than it looks. I'm somewhere east of Salida Colorado.
I awake late that night on the Arkansas River, the wind is up and my 10 x 10 tarp is flapping hard. I get out of the hammock as netting, and put a bag and a rock on one side and remove the net. The bugs are gone. The stars are overwhelming and the river is a highway, no wider than the interstate with a old rail line across the way, hard against the narrow canyon. Everything, wind, water, flowing left to right facing the river. Milky Way running behind my left shoulder over my right. I snuggle down again in shorts and tee and zip up the 40 degree North Face. Out of the wind, find a am station and listen to chat. Wake later on Richmond time, feel good, coffee.