I left and headed north through Grants Main Street, watching New Mexico wake. Cars queued at the drive-thru for breakfast, and a solitary cleaner brushed the sidewalk as the street lights flicked off.
I took a right turn on 1st Street, longing to be out of town and back in the wilds. W. Roosevelt Avenue signalled my next direction change, and after a final left turn onto Lobo Canyon Road, the bustle of town faded and the houses gave way to a familiar dry scrub.
Following the road, the trailhead appeared an hour later and I climbed, glancing back at Grants spread out like a giant map beneath me.
I saw no-one all day and skipped between open areas before pine forest beckoned me into the shade, and I listened to a gentle breeze weave through the branches. Save the occasional bird call, my world was quiet and tranquil, giving little indication of forthcoming events the next morning.
Mt Greylock Hiking Trails Map Photo Gallery
Pushed for time, and needing to reach the town of Cuba before the post office closed on Saturday, I ignored the turn-off for Mt Taylor and took the diversion skirting its western flanks. I knew Bear Claw, Grim, Lia and HoJo were up there somewhere, as they had left yesterday. I wondered if I’d cross their paths later.
Eventually the ascent topped out. Clouds skimmed the trees to my left, yielding to shafts of sunlight. I paused, debating a quick break but descended for the air to warm I flew downwards, clawing back the distance robbed from the slower uphill section. The trees parted occasionally as I fumbled for my sunglasses.