Me and Elusive were treated by my friends Nancy and Sandy McVie to a wonderful campground dinner feast here in Twin Lakes. It made the hard five days of hiking well worth it. It took Elusive and I five days to hike 70 miles, a section I thought I could cover in four days. Each day included long ascents to beautiful mountain passes. I do not time to write many details. The photos will provide glimpses of the challenges and rewards.
Summer finally arrived in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, with warm, even hot, days with clear skies (no thunderstorms for five straight days), and rapidly melting snowpack! As Mr. Snowman says: “Oh no! I’m melting…melting!”
I left Pagosa Springs on June 11 after two days of welcome zeros. But I did not feel mentally ready to go back to the CDT, and instead wanted to stay another day in wonderful Pagosa Springs after taking care of town chores. The result was an unsettled mind state. And I believe this contributed to forgetting to pack my headlamp in my backpack. I hiked just 4 miles on June 11, and that was all I could handle, and discovering I had no normal way to illuminate the dark night made my unsettled feeling even worse.
Hiking the CDT is to “embrace the brutality.”
The CDT reaches the high, snowy country just north of Cumbres Pass in little time. I added a lot of weight to my backpack in Chama: snowshoes, microspikes an ice ax and a a seven day supply of food.