Wow! What a difference to have good trail. The GDT has made me think that I had lost a step or three, but today was fantastic. 27 miles and I could have easily gone the 31 to town, but it’s much better to nero in and then get most of the day for town chores.
The skyline trail was wonderful with amazing views. As usual, my pictures will not capture it. As I’ve already mentioned, it was easy walking even with the 4300 ft overall elevation gain. The Notch was the steepest climb and really wasn’t bad. From a distance, I wondered how we would get over the pass because there was a cornice across the whole pass. It turned out that there was a way around the right side and once on top …. Wow!Down at the trailhead for the Skyline trail after a long downhill on a decommissioned road, we stopped for a break and had dinner. While sitting there on the ground, some weekend hikers came down. I heard “Stick a fork in me I’m done”, and then saw poles flying. This guy got into the parking lot and instantly shed his pack. We talked for a while with some of the group and they drove off. Later I looked up and there was his pack. I guess he was so done that he wanted nothing more to do with that giant pack. We hiked another 3 miles and camped next to the #7 trail to Jasper. Backtrack did so with the help of my year old hydrocodone. I’ll fill in those details tomorrow.