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Poised for Mojave Crossing

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11/4/12, Twentynine Palms, CA (Coord. N. 34 deg, 08.191 min; W. 116 deg, 02.587 min)

After a day off, I hitched B.O.B. and Doc and drove 22 miles to the eastern edge of the City of Twentynine Palms.

It was a tough pull over some sandy roads to get back to the main road.  After a day off, both horses started off a little slow, but quickened their pace as the day wore on.

In order to get in the optimum position for my desert crossing, I needed to camp near the last reliable source of water on the east side of Twentynine Palms.  This meant a long day of pulling for the team.  The wagon and trailer were over my normal load-out, as I gathered all my supplies on the day off and didnít count on the feed store being open on Sunday.  I picked up one more water container, so my total water load is now 120 gallons. This is sufficient to handle the 50 to 55 miles between sources of water during the Mojave crossing.  I also left Joshua Tree with 1200 pounds of hay and 500 pounds of grain. This is enough feed for the crossing with a 2 day reserve.

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Trekking through the City of Twentynine Palms.

As always, I met a lot of good people on my travels today.

Tonight, Iím camped on a piece of desert, across from a small subdivision of houses. Some gracious home owners provided me with water, so the horses will be tanked up and the wagon will be full of water when I depart in the morning.  The trek to the Colorado River Aquaduct is 55 miles, and should take three days. If for some reason itís empty, I have a couple of people that will act as a safety net to ensure I have enough water for the crossing. This is a lot easier than it was in the old days when people had to make the crossing on a whim and a prayer, without a safety net.