Durango

Date: 6/14/2016 Day: 39 Distance: 0 miles start: stop: Elevation: 7700 ft Others Here: Linus Cloudbuster, Ron, JK, Toothpick Camp: Toothpick’s place Ron, though he has some mountaineering experience, does not have an iceaxe or microspikes.  There is no place in town where they can be had either. We urged Ron to at least get an iceaxe because some of the traverses in the next section have the potential to be somewhat treacherous.  Knife edge is one I specifically remember from last time. It turns out that Cloudbuster has a friend in Durango who not only has an iceaxe but …

Pagosa Springs

Date: 6/13/2016 Day: 38 Distance: 7 miles start: 6:15 am stop: 9:30 m Elevation: 7700 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster, Ron, Deco, Dragon Dan Camp: Pinewood Inn Got going nice and early this morning with thoughts of restaurant food in our heads.   JK contacted me last night via my Delorme Inreach to say that he would be able to meet us at the pass.  Of course there was plenty of snow between us and the pass.  As we approached the Wolf Creek sky area on the northern slope through the trees we assessed or options.  Traverse the side of the mountain …

Is that a rock?

Date: 6/12/2016 Day: 37 Distance: 18.5 miles start: 7:30 am stop: 6:30 pm Elevation: 11053 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Camp: ; tenting Can you find the trail in this photo?  I didn’t think so.  It is somewhere under the snow on this slope.   Just an example of the route finding challenges.  We just went straight down through the trees from here because we knew the trail went through silver pass down below us. Got up this morning and Cloudbuster asked me if that was a tent down below us.  I said naw, that’s a rock.  Well a person climbed out …

Decisions

Date: 6/11/2016 Day: 36 Distance: 18 miles start: 6:40 am stop: 6:00 pm Elevation: 12631 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Camp: near summit peak ; tenting Sorry, I was too tired on this night to do the journal, so it’s a day later. We hiked about a mile to Blue Lake where we ran into Masshole and Stummy.  They had attempted the high route that we were headed toward and turned back.  They told us there was a particular traverse that was icy and way too sketchy for them. They said there was no way it could be done without crampons …

Tra la la, I hope I don’t die

Date: 6/10/2016 Day: 34 Distance: 16.5 miles start: 6:40 am stop: 8:00 pm Elevation: 11680 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Camp: 1 mile south of Blue Lake; tenting The day started off wonderfully.   Blue skies, magnificent mountains, and a song in my heart.  Just a great day to be hiking the continental divide.  The snowshoes proved worth their weight in gold, and all throughout the day I commented on how thankful I was for them, and how happy I was we decided to carry them. The snow came and went, so we were carrying therm at around 11 when we stopped …

Wow, what a change!

Date: 6/09/2016 Day: 34 Distance: 10 miles start: 3:00 pm stop: 7:30 pm Elevation: 11807 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Camp: Just below Flat Mountain; tenting Terri and Kip, the hotel owners, were amazing. She did our laundry for us and they have is a big discount on the price.  Then they left the keys in their car and told us to us to take it anytime we needed.  That was a big help getting back and forth to the post office on the other side of town. Speaking of the post office, how does UPS deliver a package you've been …

Waiting for snowshoes

Date: 6/08/2016 Day: 33 Distance: 0 miles start: stop: Elevation: 8030 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Camp: Cumbres Suites in Chama After much thought and learning that basically everyone that has continued north from Cumbres Pass has used snowshoes, we decided to bite the bullet and order some for ourselves.  I was hoping to go north without them, but Cloudbuster has been keeping up with reports from those ahead of us.  Everyone is saying that snowshoes are a must.  Otherwise, we would be postholing most of the way to Wolf Creek Pass and beyond. We both ordered a pair and they …

Living Donation

Date: 6/08/2016 Day: 33 Distance: 0 miles start: stop: Elevation: 8030 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Others in town: Paperweight, Sas, Not a Chance  (actually hiking a different trail that intersects) Camp: Cumbres Suites in Chama When I was just a wee lad, my sister, Janice, saved my life at a public swimming pool.  That would have been at either Bozeman, MT or Gunnison, CO; I’m not sure which.  Little did she know she was preserving her own personal kidney farm.  When she was 15 or 16, she fell from a cliff near Bozeman and suffered a compound fracture in her …

Colorado

Date: 6/07/2016 Day: 32 Distance: 14 miles start: 6:15 am stop: 1:00 pm Elevation: 8030 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Others in town: Dragon Dan, Deco Camp: Cumbres Suites in Chama Well, I’ve walked to Colorado and I’m beginning to feel like a thru-hiker.  We had a short 13 miles to Cumbres Pass today and experienced our first significant snow. If I had to guess I’d say there was about 2 miles of snow under the trees on northern slopes at around 10500 feet.  Navigation is a little more daunting in the trees because there are no obvious landmarks.  I guess …

Remember to be thankful

Date: 6/06/2016 Day: 31 Distance: 30 miles start: 6:30 am stop: 7:00 pm Elevation: 10430 ft Others Here: Cloudbuster Camp: saddle in Carson national forest just a few miles from CO border; tenting Today was a difficult day for some reason.  I didn't get as much sleep last night since it stormed all night. That may have had something to do with it.  Mostly it was a mental thing and I felt I was wiped out much of the day.  I had a hard time remembering to be thankful.  When we somehow walked a mile or so east of the …