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Cathie - Continental Divide Trail Journal - 2014

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Cathie "Fruitcake" Cummins
City: Smith Mountain Lake
State: Virginia
Country: USA
Begins: Aug 3, 2014
Direction: Southbound

Daily Summary
Date: Sun, Aug 3rd, 2014
Start: still at home
End: still at home
Daily Distance: 0

Journal Stats
Entry Visits: 465
Journal Visits: 8,843
Guestbook Views: 1,110
Guestbook Entrys: 24

Continental Divide Trail Map

Returning to the CDT

Wow! So much has happened since I was last on Postholer. I will try to catch up any readers without boring them with detail. In 2012, Randy and I had to leave the CDT at Lemhi Pass because my knee would no longer work properly. We had maps only for the Montana side, so we hiked down that way. Mistake. Should have gone west toward Idaho, as we would have, and will this trip, at Bannock Pass. With the generous, and much appreciated help of several folks, we made it home safely. Heartbroken at being unable to complete our hike on the CDT, we consoled ourselves by making the decision to move from northern Virginia's DC suburbs. This is not a surprise to anyone who followed our blog in 2012. We now reside in a different world, at Smith Mountain Lake. Randy is retired, but I went back to work part time in pediatric physical therapy. I also started a nonprofit corporation for pediatric assistive technology re-use (please go to

Knee surgery and a couple of Synvisc injections later, short backpacking trips on the AT in Virginia, and in the Whites of NH, have gone well. Then there was that conversation with the new employer, asking for seven weeks of unpaid leave. "You want to do what? What is the CDT? Are you crazy?" Let me just say, that I certainly do appreciate all of my employers, past and present, who have tolerated my hiking of the AT, LT, PCT, TRT, and the MST. You are good people: Suzan Syron, Susan Sigler, and Nancy Butts.

I remember our successful completion of the PCT in 2007. I was 50 years old, and on top of the world. Then I had a conversation with a friend who works at the office of the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club, Pat Fankhauser. She warned me that the next decade would be rough, but then my 60s would be better. Now, at age 57, I understand what she meant. Falling apart, so to speak, is inevitable. Get used to it. Adapt. Keep going.

Next Thursday, Randy and I will drive to DC to take our 19 year old kitty to our daughter, Sarah. We will park our car with our daughter, Heather, at her Bramble Creek Farm, and on Friday, she will drive us to Dulles airport. Cousin Sara Alice will meet us at the Missoula, MT, airport and drive us, Saturday, to Lemhi Pass. We will begin again.

There are plenty of hikers out there older than we are. Please wish us luck that we may stay among them. Writing this reminds me that to be able to long distance hike, one must put themselves in a position, many times, of having to ask favors of others. In so doing, we come to feel grateful. Feeling grateful is good. Here's to generous employers, daughters, cousins, and strangers who become friends. Thank you.


aka Fruitcake

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Journal Photo

Fruitcake & Nutz On The CDT

The Continental Divide Trail extends nearly 3000 miles through the Rocky Mountains from Canada to New Mexico, and includes Montana, Wyoming, Colorado and New Mexico.


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