New Mexico, a beautiful state full of kind people, has been a true challenge to walk through. High elevations (in excess of 7000 feet), cold weather (lows in the upper twenties) and high winds (fifteen to twenty miles per hour) make walking a real challenge. Add to that the tailwinds of eighteen wheelers flying by you at 75 miles per hour and you probably have a pretty good idea of what I am talking about.
I begin each day with at least three, and sometimes four layers of clothing, shedding layers as the day gets warmer and I begin to perspire from walking. Within an hour my bottom two layers are soaking wet, yet I cannot remove my outer layers because doing so in the cold winds here would result in my inner layers freezing, which would be really bad news. I try to maintain a steady pace, and I keep my water breaks as short as possible because if I stand still to long my inner layers begin to freeze, or at least it feels that way. So far I’ve only been able to walk about 10 to 12 miles a day before complete exhaustion sets in and I have to stop walking for the day.
Each evening I try to find a place to set up my tent where there is at least some type of a wind break, even if it is just a few small bushes. Prior to writing this I set my tent up in an area surrounded by trees on three sides. The trees should provide me with a decent windbreak tonight and allow for warmer sleeping conditions. I’ve also purchased a horsehair blanket that should help keep out the cold because my sleeping bag is just not made to handle twenty degree weather.
I am probably a little less than 60 miles from Albuquerque, and I am trying to decide whether or not I should continue walking into the city, or if I should try to bypass it and head due south before I get there. My window for avoiding really cold temperatures is closing fast, and the quicker I get south to warmer temperatures the better. Please pray that God will make this decision clear to me, and he will lead me to exactly where he wants me to be. I know he will take care of me, and I look forward to seeing what he has in store for me as I continue with my journey.
Thank you to all of you that continue to pray for me. God continues to answer your prayers and you have been a real comfort to me. Please know that I pray for all of you as I walk each day, that God will bless your walk with him, and that he will provide for each of you according to your individual needs. What a blessing this walk has been, especially when it comes to my personal walk with Jesus Christ. Reading his Word for hours each day, and praying all day as I walk has really changed my perspective on so many things. And being able to help others as I have walked has been such a blessing, especially after all of the help I have received from so many others along the way. I am so thankful for all of his blessings!
As soon as I get another chance I will update my blog again. Not sure when that will be…
Always Onward I Walk,