Today is my 3-month anniversary on trail, and I awoke to more of the same weather. Last night I could hardly sleep with the storm crashing so loud. The cabin shook with some wind gusts, and if I were out in my tarp, I’d have been absolutely screwed. A 4 season mountaineering tent might have withstood those blasts, but if this cabin was quaking I don’t know what to think. Found a deck of cards and played solitaire, thinking I’d just spend the day here, but around noon things cleared up a little. Crammed my gear away and took off.Going up Hunchback Pass, I met Richard coming the other way. He had a nice map of the surrounding trails and since he was going out, I offered to buy it. He agreed, so now I had detailed routes in case I needed to bail off the exposed CDT. This turned out to be the best $10 I ever spent because going up Hunchback the rain turned to sleet and I couldn’t see a thing. Lightning appeared close so I hustled over the pass in a whiteout and took the first trail headed to lower elevations. It began to snow heavily and I pushed on, paralleling the CDT but a couple of thousand feet lower in elevation. Here I had tree cover from the wind. Who knows what I’ll do now. There isn’t a good alternative from here; either I go back up to the CDT in 20 miles or head to a road and walk to my next town re-supply in Pagosa Springs. The road walk will bring me in a roundabout way to my destination, adding many miles, but I can’t see risking the high elevations in this lousy weather. I’m camped at 9500 feet now in some sparse tree cover and another round of thunderstorms are rumbling above. I’ve been rained/snowed on all day and can’t imagine being up on the CDT right now.
- Starting Location: talk about ‘trail angels’!
- Destination: Hunchback Pass