The morning was like a wonderland. After all the rain last night, there was a thick fog that had settled in the trees. As we rode out of camp, it was like riding through ghost trees- they would appear out of nowhere. We slowly wound our way down in elevation and were excited to pass a sign that said Blanding was only 30 miles away. We were going to make it!
A truck passed us today with 3 people in it that were quite excited to hear our story. They took pity on us and gave us their sandwich fixings that they had taken for lunch. I forgot to mention that Richard had been daydreaming of peanut butter cookies. They ‘happened’ to have some with them. God is so attentive to detail! Real food tasted so good after so many days of nothing but dehydrated food that we ate too fast. I got a stomach ache. I felt like a starving child but knew I was not starving. There is something more to food than nutrition. I think that good food- when it is appreciated- feeds the soul too. Today, just a sandwich, chips, and cookies seemed like fine dining and refreshed our spirits.
It’s a good thing too. Because then we were tempted……. with a horse trailer! I had received a message on my cell phone that we had potential hosts in Blanding. I found it interesting that we had cell service for the first time in 4 weeks- right when we desperately needed a break. I contacted these wonderful folks- the Stevens- and they agreed to host us. We would meet them tomorrow. But around an hour later, a vehicle pulled up next to us and out steps our news hosts coming to check on us! These dear, sweet people offered to go get their horse trailer and take us home tonight so we didn’t have to spend one more night drinking nasty water, riding in the rain, going without a shower, eating dehydrated food, and trying to find anything to feed our horses. Evil. Pure Evil! I am happy to announce that we were strong- we did not cave! After 12 days in a row, we figured we could do one more and not cheat! It was hard to pass that up- let me tell you, but it was worth it!
Of course the campsite made that decision harder. There were only two puddles of water- but at least there was enough. There was no food for the horses. We let them scrounge around to try to find anything they could. We hand picked them a couple fistfulls of grass. It was all we could find. They gave us such pitiful looks and we felt terrible. We wished we had known how little feed would be on this stretch so we could have taken some with us. But they would get fed well tomorrow and we hoped we could put some weight back on them.