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Arkansas High Country, day 9: Marble to Ponca

Marble to Ponca, 
June 16, 2019

~ 53.7 miles, 4,787 feet of climbing

It rained overnight, accompanied by lightning and distant thunder. Bad weather always leaves me feeling scared and exposed when camping, and in full-on fragile flower mode I swore to myself that I wouldn't spend another night outside on this trip. For context on what a big baby I was being, this was only my fourth night outside and the second time it even barely rained. I was hardly roughing it.

I woke to a dry tent and my phone lying on my chest where it had dropped mid-post the previous night. It was another tearful morning. 345 miles to go, a distance that had seemed like nothing on Saturday, now felt impossibly far. Overall I'd done well staying in the moment -- There is no tomorrow, there's just me and this road -- but that control had begun to shrink along with the mileage.

I left the campground just before 8, planning to hopscotch to Ponca (50ish miles) then Compton (another 7) and see where I ended…

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