Mile 414, under Mazatzal Peak

Another hard hike. But just hard, not punishing and brutal. The climbs were 500 and 1000 feet, not 3500. And never more than two of steep, rough, overgrown and shadeless, whereas yesterday was all four nearly all the time.

Rough country

I’m camped under Mazatzal Peak, near the crest of the range. I’ll soon start the long descent to the Sunflower valley and home.

Mazatzal Peak

The Mazatzals are a rough chaotic range, with no real form or plan. Rolling hills sit next to rugged torn summits, broad valleys next to deep gorges. Except in a few deep shady gullies, the vegetation is sparse and spindly and often thorny. Saw a few mule deer and a few birds and a milk snake, but these mountains are mostly deserted. These are not mountains of inspiration, but of unease and dread. Nothing will ever come easy here.