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Begins: Aug 10, 2017
Date: Mon, Sep 4th, 2017
Entry Visits: 1,049
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Junction Creek Bench to Junction Creek Trailhead
471.1 to 484.5 for 13.4 miles
I woke early to what was a rather warm and dry night. The moon was almost full and I watched it move across the sky as the night turned to day. I got walking at 6:30 AM after saying goodbye to Alex's sweet dog. It was one of the first mornings when I didn't need warm clothes to start. I knew as soon as the sun came over the mountain it would be hot.
It was hard to stay present with all the logistics of town and travel ahead. I found an open spot on the trail and had phone service. I checked flights and found a good fare on Thursday. I didn't plan on staying in Durango, but it will give me some time to regroup.
There was one more nice mountain view on the way down, and as I approached the end, there were tons off day hikers and MTBers coming up the trail. Some people recognized what I was doing and congratulated me. One MTBer offered me a ride, but was gone by the time I reached the trailhead. A very kind women named Susan and her poodle gave me a ride and made every effort to help me out. She was glad to help and her kindness to a stranger was overwhelming! I promised to return this kindness to someone in need.
In town it was good to get cleaned up, do laundry, call my wife, and drink a cold beer to top off my trip! The Colorado Trail experience will always be a part of me!
Things I'm glad I did:
It was a good decision to start in mid August after most of the monsoons were over. Most hikers that started in July were demotivated by the amount and duration of rain they endured. It was also a good decision to start at Denver where the elevations were lower for a few days. Not because of the climbing as much as less exposure to weather.
I stayed at two hostels which was new for me. I met a lot of other people on similar adventures and made my town time more rich.
My resupply plan at Frisco (buy), Twin Lakes (box), Salida (buy), Lake City (buy), Molas Lake (box) worker out just fine.
Things I would do differently:
It didn't get as cold at night as I thought it would. I only had about three or four frosty nights. I could have taken my lighter down jacket (Ghost Whisperer).
Plan to get the noon free shuttle into Lake City. It is hard to get a ride from Spring Creek Pass.
Try to anticipate a finish time in Lake City (when I had phone service) and book a flight out of Durango more in advance.
Jim's Sobo CT Journey
The Colorado Trail is a 486-mile long-distance trail running from the mouth of Waterton Canyon southwest of Denver to Durango in Colorado, United States. Its highest point is 13,271-foot above sea level, and most of the trail is above 10,000-foot. Learn more: www.coloradotrail.org
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