July 2014
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Philmont – Day 2 – Vaca

Today we got up early and got ready to get to the Welcome Center to wait for our bus to the trailhead. At 9:10 we were loading our packs on the bus and waiting for the adventure to begin. I tried to get a picture and it appears that this group has a few that want to run and hide from the camera.


At the trailhead we received more training. We then picked up our packs to begin our trek on the trail and one of the packs broke. It was the rented pack. We were lucky to have cell coverage and could reach base camp. They advised us that they were going to bring us a replacement pack. Within 40 minutes we had the replacement pack.

We got ready and put our packs on and began the hike towards Vaca. The first mile was a long one as it took us almost an hour. There were a lot of pack adjustments as most of us had more weight in our packs. Additionally, some of us were not used to having the extra weight. The next two miles passed quickly as we hiked each mile in under 30 minutes.

As for Vaca, I remember it from 2011 when I took a picture of the well there. It was dry and brown.

Vaca Well - 2011

Vaca Well – 2011

As for this year, it was a lot greener. It is amazing what some water can do.

Vaca Well - 2014

Vaca Well – 2014

We got to the campsite, hung our bear bags and continued with some training. The process of cooking dinner was covered as that includes sterilizing the dishes before you eat.

We also had a campfire, which took a little work to get going. Rain has a way of making combustion difficult. Ranger Chris is in the foreground.


Some of the miracles for the day are 1. receiving a replacement backpack so quickly; 2. making it to camp without any trouble and; 3. getting a fire started.

And new for this year is the flora and fauna of the day section. The pictures at the bottom of the post will all be dependent on what we see of may have seen as we trekked and camped in God’s country. Today we have a member of the Aster family, most likely a daisy and the One Seed Juniper.



One Seed Juniper

One Seed Juniper

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