The Arizona Trail Day 26: Blister Beetles

Friday, April 12, 2013 – 10.1 km

The noisy fridge in my motel room didn’t bother me at first, especially since it quieted down when I hit it (a sure method for dealing with every appliance to ever have been invented), but in the morning, I discovered that my leftover pizza was frozen. I suppose the fridge was so noisy because it was on a high setting. NOOOOO MY PIZZA!!! It wasn’t frozen solid, but it was stiff and the tomatoes and peppers were frosty. What could I eat for breakfast? I ate the frozen pizza. I like to shock foodies with stories like this.

I walked the 12 km out of town today. I had woken up with mild cold symptoms and wasn’t feeling up to par, but was excited for the reputedly beautiful Passage 16.

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Water cache outside Kearny

The trail got off to a good start as it climbed into the hills and followed the river, providing lovely views of Kearny and the mountains and a hideous, hideous mine.

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The Gila River
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I noticed an unfamiliar insect, a large beetle with a red head and blue body. Weird bug. A picture was taken. Then I saw another one. Then another. They were swarming everywhere! Or at least on three or four bushes! Ewww, blaugh! With a few exceptions, I am not a fan of insects. I have been known to run from them on occasion, and these beetles looked like something that Fear Factor contestants would be forced to eat. My pack was too heavy for running though, so I just continued my slow plod uphill, brushing nervously at my limbs. Wikipedia says that the insects were blister beetles and secrete a blistering agent called cantharidin, so I guess my instincts were right this time. ‘Instincts’.

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Blurry for obvious reasons.
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