Category: Hiking

CDT Day 71 – Bull Spring

Date: 9/1/20

Daily Miles: 26

Total Miles: 1288

It was another cold night and our tent was covered in ice when we woke up. It was so cold outside that we were reluctant to get out of our sleeping bags, but we couldn’t put it off.

We started the morning with all of our extra layers of clothes on. In fact, we didn’t take any layers off until 10:00am. We had finally managed to warm up and we didn’t want to get cold again. Luckily the sky was clear today…not even a cloud in the sky.

We made it to our first water source at 10:00am and took a long break. Our bodies have been feeling the effects of the higher mile days, the repetitive walking on roads, and the ground sleeping. It was good to just lay down and take our shoes off for a bit.

The majority of the walking today was on a dirt road that seemed to be completely straight. It felt like we were bee lining for Rawlins. Eventually we came out to a paved road. Some previous hikers recommended taking the paved road to avoid some bad tra..

Date: 9/1/20

Daily Miles: 26

Total Miles: 1288

It was another cold night and our tent was covered in ice when we woke up. It was so cold outside that we were reluctant to get out of our sleeping bags, but we couldn’t put it off.

We started the morning with all of our extra layers of clothes on. In fact, we didn’t take any layers off until 10:00am. We had finally managed to warm up and we didn’t want to get cold again. Luckily the sky was clear today…not even a cloud in the sky.

We made it to our first water source at 10:00am and took a long break. Our bodies have been feeling the effects of the higher mile days, the repetitive walking on roads, and the ground sleeping. It was good to just lay down and take our shoes off for a bit.

The majority of the walking today was on a dirt road that seemed to be completely straight. It felt like we were bee lining for Rawlins. Eventually we came out to a paved road. Some previous hikers recommended taking the paved road to avoid some bad trail, so we decided to do that. That meant that we were walking on pavement for about two hours…not our favorite thing, but the road was mostly quiet so it wasn’t too bad.

When we got back on the trail, there wasn’t actually any trail. We were just going cross country, but there were almost no trail markers and no cairns. What there was a lot of were cacti, so we really had to keep our eyes open.

Our day ended at a really nice solar powered spring. We collected our water for tomorrow and then set up our tent in a grassy area nearby. We are basically camped in a field of cow poop…luckily our little spot was clear. We are near a state highway, but the noise is pretty minor. A group of wild horses came galloping near our area when we were in the tent. We always enjoy seeing them, however we hope they won’t bother us tonight.

It was nice to have a day that turned out warm and that had only a normal amount of wind. It is completely still now as we lay in our tent.

We are looking forward to getting into Rawlins tomorrow. It will be nice to be able to wash off all the sand and dust that has been blown onto us these past few days.

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CDT Day 70 – Crooks Creek

Date: 8/31/20

Daily Miles: 24

Total Miles: 1262

Last night was one of our coldest nights. We woke up to ice on the outside of our tent. We had both put in ear plugs before going to sleep to block out the noise from the wind. That definitely helped us have a decent night of sleep. At some point during the night, the wind died down and it was completely still when we got up.

It was cold enough that we started with our down jackets and wore them for several hours. It was grey and overcast all day and it never warmed up. We even wore our down jackets for about an hour after lunch. We kept our windshirts on all day and our mittens were on most of the day.

We had two water sources today and they were both really nice piped sources. It was good to have enough water to do laundry since we weren’t able to do it yesterday.

Around mid-morning, we crossed a gravel road and at that point, it felt like our tread changed for the rest of the day. We went from walking on fairly firm or rocky grou..

Date: 8/31/20

Daily Miles: 24

Total Miles: 1262

Last night was one of our coldest nights. We woke up to ice on the outside of our tent. We had both put in ear plugs before going to sleep to block out the noise from the wind. That definitely helped us have a decent night of sleep. At some point during the night, the wind died down and it was completely still when we got up.

It was cold enough that we started with our down jackets and wore them for several hours. It was grey and overcast all day and it never warmed up. We even wore our down jackets for about an hour after lunch. We kept our windshirts on all day and our mittens were on most of the day.

We had two water sources today and they were both really nice piped sources. It was good to have enough water to do laundry since we weren’t able to do it yesterday.

Around mid-morning, we crossed a gravel road and at that point, it felt like our tread changed for the rest of the day. We went from walking on fairly firm or rocky ground to walking in soft, deep sand…definitely not enjoyable. At times, we would try to find cattle paths that paralleled the road/trail in order to get something more firm to walk on. Of course, then we had to keep our eyes open for small cacti hiding near the sage bushes.

During our lunch break, we put out our tent and ground sheets to dry. Even though it wasn’t warm, it was windy and things dried out pretty quickly.

In the afternoon, the wind started to pick up and it got pretty cold. We put on an extra layer of clothes to try to stay warm, but mostly just kept walking. We managed to find a spot for dinner that was slightly out of the wind. But after dinner the winds picked up again.

We had planned to walk a few more miles today, but when we saw a wash we thought would be out of the wind, we decided to stop. The spot wasn’t as protected as we thought, and it was a real struggle to get the tent up. At one point we thought about just giving up on the tent, but we realized that the extra warmth it would provide out of the wind was pretty important. With the help of a lot of big rocks and some patience, we managed to get it up.

As we lay in our sleeping bags now, the wind has thankfully died down. It is still quite cold, but that is tolerable. Tomorrow is supposed to be warmer, which we are looking forward to.

So far, the wind has really been the hardest thing to deal with in the Basin. There is no place to escape from the wind which can be mentally challenging at times.

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CDT Day 68 – Sweetwater River

Date: 8/29/20

Daily Miles: 26

Total Miles: 1212

We had a nice breakfast this morning made by the lodge owners…eggs, hash browns, sausage and pancakes. Yum!

We really enjoyed our time in Atlantic City. It is always interesting to visit small towns on our hikes and to hear about life in many different places. Atlantic City is very small (year round population in the 30s) and very isolated. It makes us realize that there is no one “American story”…life can be so radically different depending on where you live.

We headed back to the trail at 8:00am. It was nice and cool this morning with cloudy skies and a good breeze…perfect weather for heading into the Basin. Almost our entire day was spent walking on dirt roads. It makes the miles go faster, but can be a bit monotonous.

The bike-packers rode by us after an hour or so. We chatted with them for several minutes and wished them both well. They were both really nice and we enjoyed hanging out with them.

We also got some surprise trai..

Date: 8/29/20

Daily Miles: 26

Total Miles: 1212

We had a nice breakfast this morning made by the lodge owners…eggs, hash browns, sausage and pancakes. Yum!

We really enjoyed our time in Atlantic City. It is always interesting to visit small towns on our hikes and to hear about life in many different places. Atlantic City is very small (year round population in the 30s) and very isolated. It makes us realize that there is no one “American story”…life can be so radically different depending on where you live.

We headed back to the trail at 8:00am. It was nice and cool this morning with cloudy skies and a good breeze…perfect weather for heading into the Basin. Almost our entire day was spent walking on dirt roads. It makes the miles go faster, but can be a bit monotonous.

The bike-packers rode by us after an hour or so. We chatted with them for several minutes and wished them both well. They were both really nice and we enjoyed hanging out with them.

We also got some surprise trail magic this morning…we had sent several boxes to the restaurant in Atlantic City, Miner’s Grubstake. One of our packages from Amazon (containing badly needed socks and camp towel for Beardoh) wasn’t there. Well, one of the owners Laura had called around for us last night and it seemed that the package had been delivered to another business an hour away. So, we were walking down the dirt road this morning and here comes Laura driving down the road to catch us. Turns out the package came to her today, so she drove out of town to find us on the trail so she could give Beardoh his package. We were really touched by her thoughtfulness and willingness to go above and beyond for hikers.

The rest of the day, we were just putting one foot in front of the other, walking down dirt roads. It was a pretty nice temperature all day, with occasional clouds blocking the sun for extra relief. We saw some signage for both the Oregon Trail and the California Trail. As far as we know, these trails are more memorials to the early pioneers, rather than trails that people thru-hike.

In the late afternoon, the wind really picked up as some rain clouds came up. As it started to sprinkle, we found shelter behind a rock outcropping. We decided to use the time to make dinner, and by the time we were done, the skies were clear again.

We found a tolerable campsite (it was flat-ish, but there were three kinds of poop to kick out of the way: horse, cow and antelope) around 7:00pm and started to fumble our way through setting up our tent. Since the Basin is pretty much devoid of trees, we have swapped our hammocks for a tent. Since this was our first night with the different gear, it felt like it just took us forever to set up our shelter. Surely we’ll get faster after a few days.

Today we saw our first horny toad of the trip. We also saw two snakes, some antelope and about 35 wild horses.

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CDT Day 63 – Lester Pass

Date: 8/24/20

Daily Miles: 15

Total Miles: 1104

We had a nice day off in Pinedale. We mostly just hung out in our motel room, which is generally how we like to spend our time on zero days. We did walk down to the grocery store to buy our food for the next stretch. We got to admire the many cool murals on the commercial buildings in town…definitely gives the town an artsy feel.

For most of the town stops on this trail, we had prepared resupply boxes before starting the hike. We did decide to buy food in towns on a few occasions. Pinedale was a place where we decided to buy our food in town. This is usually pretty hard for us to do efficiently, since we do it so rarely. This time, we felt like we were pretty organized with a shopping list. While we got the food we wanted (mostly), we didn’t give much consideration to the weight of the food (like we do with the food we send out). So, our five day food carry for this stretch is insanely heavy. We just keep shaking our heads when we fee..

Date: 8/24/20

Daily Miles: 15

Total Miles: 1104

We had a nice day off in Pinedale. We mostly just hung out in our motel room, which is generally how we like to spend our time on zero days. We did walk down to the grocery store to buy our food for the next stretch. We got to admire the many cool murals on the commercial buildings in town…definitely gives the town an artsy feel.

For most of the town stops on this trail, we had prepared resupply boxes before starting the hike. We did decide to buy food in towns on a few occasions. Pinedale was a place where we decided to buy our food in town. This is usually pretty hard for us to do efficiently, since we do it so rarely. This time, we felt like we were pretty organized with a shopping list. While we got the food we wanted (mostly), we didn’t give much consideration to the weight of the food (like we do with the food we send out). So, our five day food carry for this stretch is insanely heavy. We just keep shaking our heads when we feel the weight of a day of food (fruit pies are heavy!!)…at least the food we got is really tasty and different than our regular food on trail.

We were lucky this morning to have a local Trail Angel, Alex, give us a ride back to the trailhead. He was really nice and interesting. He works for the BLM, so that led to some interesting discussions.

We got to the trailhead around 9:30am and started our 10 mile hike back to the CDT. Luckily, the side trail for Pinedale access is a really nice trail. It seems to be very popular, so it is in great shape and you hardly realize you are climbing in elevation. You do have to deal with loads of people on the trail, but at least everyone is friendly. We saw several folks hiking today that we had seen on Saturday when we were headed to town…we had just swapped directions – we were hiking in now and they were hiking out. Several recognized us and asked what we were doing heading back in.

We ran into a CDT southbound hiker, Nomad, on the side trail. He was hiking out to meet up with a friend in Pinedale and to do a few days of local hiking before returning to the CDT. Not sure if we’ll see him again before we hit Steamboat Springs. It will depend on how quickly he goes when he gets back on trail.

We made it back to the CDT around 2:30pm and then started a climb up and over Lester Pass, which is around 11,500 feet. We were glad to see that it was not as smokey today as it had been our last few days in the trail. It is still a bit hazy, but our views are much better.

The views from the climb to Lester Pass were really beautiful…multiple small lakes in the rocky landscape. It felt good to be back on the trail after almost two days in town.

We had a ford at the end of the day that we decided to take our shoes off for…no reason to end the day with wet shoes. We found a nice campsite around 5:45pm. There were elk nearby that ran off when we started to scout out hanging locations. Hopefully they won’t come by during the night to sniff around.

We ended up planning out our mileage again for this stretch, since there are a lot of treeless areas. Tomorrow we have planned a bigger mile day than today, so we are going to get up early to make sure we finish at a decent time. We also really like the early morning time for hiking, so it will be a win-win.

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CDT Day 65 – Cirque of Towers

Date: 8/26/20

Daily Miles: 21

Total Miles: 1147

It had stopped raining before we fell asleep last night, but it started back up around 4:00am. Luckily it didn’t last long, and by the time our alarm went off at 5:30am, the rain had stopped. We had decided to get up early today, since we had a lot of miles to hike in what we had heard was difficult terrain.

As we were starting out, it was just light enough to turn off our headlamps. It was quite warm this morning and it was probably the first time in a long time that we didn’t start with any extra clothes.

Luckily, as the sky lightened up, we could tell that the sky was clearing…it looked like we were going to have a beautiful day. We startled a small group of elk and we could just see their silhouettes as they ran across the trail, with the sunrise illuminating the mountain peaks behind them. It was quite a special moment.

We had four miles this morning before we got to a junction with one of the CDT’s most notable alternates. The..

Date: 8/26/20

Daily Miles: 21

Total Miles: 1147

It had stopped raining before we fell asleep last night, but it started back up around 4:00am. Luckily it didn’t last long, and by the time our alarm went off at 5:30am, the rain had stopped. We had decided to get up early today, since we had a lot of miles to hike in what we had heard was difficult terrain.

As we were starting out, it was just light enough to turn off our headlamps. It was quite warm this morning and it was probably the first time in a long time that we didn’t start with any extra clothes.

Luckily, as the sky lightened up, we could tell that the sky was clearing…it looked like we were going to have a beautiful day. We startled a small group of elk and we could just see their silhouettes as they ran across the trail, with the sunrise illuminating the mountain peaks behind them. It was quite a special moment.

We had four miles this morning before we got to a junction with one of the CDT’s most notable alternates. The Cirque of Towers gets a lot of air time, because it is seen by many as possibly the most beautiful stretch of the whole trail. The alternate is about 21 miles long…it goes over several passes and along many pristine alpine lakes. We have been looking forward to it for awhile, so we were especially glad for the clear skies.

When we think of the four hardest and steepest climbs of the CDT so far, we would have to say that two of the hardest climbs would have to be from today. For both climbs, as we approached the climb and looked at it, there was no obvious way to get up the pass. But, in both cases, there was a “trail” of some sort that we could follow as we inched our way up. In both instances, we were grateful to have climbed the steep slope instead of having to descend it. Our descents were still steep (just not as steep as the ascent), and made our knees and feet very sore. These passes were pretty slow going, but we always had amazing views from high above.

We hiked 17 of the 21+ miles of the alternate today. This has been one of, if not the most, stunning and spectacular day so far on the trail. Everything that we had been told of this area has been true…one of America’s wild gems. This has also been one of the most difficult and demanding days we have had in awhile.

In the middle of the afternoon, we could see the grey clouds rolling in and could hear the thunder. As we stopped to have a snack, we felt some raindrops, so we decided to put up our hammock tarp. We were glad we did, because just as we were settling ourselves under the tarp, it started to hammer rain and hail. Within thirty minutes we were back to blue skies and we continued on.

Because of the difficulty and our slower pace, we decided not to stop for dinner in the early evening. We wanted to make sure we made it to camp before it got dark. We basically walked until we were back in trees for hanging (there had been a five mile treeless stretch at the end of the day). We made it to camp by 7:45pm and we were exhausted and starved.

We are camped along a creek and we can tell that it is going to be a pretty cold night. It feels good to be laying down and all snuggled in our sleeping bags. This has definitely been a memorable day.

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CDT Day 64 – Hat Pass

Date: 8/25/20

Daily Miles: 22

Total Miles: 1126

It was such a nice temperature for sleeping last night. Even though it wasn’t really cold when we were packing up, we both had on our wind clothes and mittens when we started out. We figured the extra layer wouldn’t stay on long and that was correct…we were ready to shed the clothes within twenty minutes.

The morning started with several quick climbs and descents. As we came out of our last descent, the landscape really started to change. Instead of rocky peaks with little vegetation, all of a sudden we were in grassy rolling hills. The quick change was rather surprising.

The trail was pretty quiet today. We had the trail entirely to ourselves for the first four hours, and then we started to see other hikers. But we probably saw less than ten people all day…a big change from the last few days when we were on the side trail to Pinedale.

This evening after we had eaten dinner and were walking our final few miles of the day, we could s..

Date: 8/25/20

Daily Miles: 22

Total Miles: 1126

It was such a nice temperature for sleeping last night. Even though it wasn’t really cold when we were packing up, we both had on our wind clothes and mittens when we started out. We figured the extra layer wouldn’t stay on long and that was correct…we were ready to shed the clothes within twenty minutes.

The morning started with several quick climbs and descents. As we came out of our last descent, the landscape really started to change. Instead of rocky peaks with little vegetation, all of a sudden we were in grassy rolling hills. The quick change was rather surprising.

The trail was pretty quiet today. We had the trail entirely to ourselves for the first four hours, and then we started to see other hikers. But we probably saw less than ten people all day…a big change from the last few days when we were on the side trail to Pinedale.

This evening after we had eaten dinner and were walking our final few miles of the day, we could see some big, dark grey clouds in the sky. We even heard some thunder as we tried to make it to camp before any rain came. Luckily, we were able to set up our tarps and hammocks well before the rain started. Now, we can enjoy the rain from the comfort of our sleeping bags, hanging safely under our tarps.

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CDT Day 66 – Larsen Creek

Date: 8/27/20

Daily Miles: 21

Total Miles: 1168

It turned out to be another warm night…definitely not cold like we expected. It did start sprinkling at 1:00am, so we had to hop out of our hammocks and get our tarps hung up. We should have had our tarps up already just to dry out from the rain the previous night. But in our exhaustion last evening, we forgot that our tarps were still wet. We didn’t end up getting much rain overnight so our tarps were dry this morning.

We felt like we were just moving like slow pokes this morning. It took us almost three hours to go our first four miles, and the trail was quite easy. Once we realized our slow pace, we tried to be more conscious of going a bit faster.

At lunchtime, we got to a trailhead and then saw two northbound hikers, Chop Chop and Not So Fast, coming down the trail. We had met them back in the West Collegiate Mountains in Colorado. It was really nice to see them again and to hear how their hike was going. It was quite warm and s..

Date: 8/27/20

Daily Miles: 21

Total Miles: 1168

It turned out to be another warm night…definitely not cold like we expected. It did start sprinkling at 1:00am, so we had to hop out of our hammocks and get our tarps hung up. We should have had our tarps up already just to dry out from the rain the previous night. But in our exhaustion last evening, we forgot that our tarps were still wet. We didn’t end up getting much rain overnight so our tarps were dry this morning.

We felt like we were just moving like slow pokes this morning. It took us almost three hours to go our first four miles, and the trail was quite easy. Once we realized our slow pace, we tried to be more conscious of going a bit faster.

At lunchtime, we got to a trailhead and then saw two northbound hikers, Chop Chop and Not So Fast, coming down the trail. We had met them back in the West Collegiate Mountains in Colorado. It was really nice to see them again and to hear how their hike was going. It was quite warm and so we found a bit of shade to sit in while eating lunch and chatting.

While we were talking, another couple hiking the CDT, Happy Dance and All In, offered some drinks and snacks. They are hiking the trail in a unique way…they have two cars which they position at the ends of sections and then they hike from one car to the next. So, they had parked one car up at the Green River and were heading north on the trail up to their car.

The six of us ended up chatting for awhile and before we knew it, over an hour and a half had passed. It was really fun to have a bit of a social time on the trail. The number of other CDT hikers we have met has been really small, so we enjoy the few social interactions we get.

The trail really changed after the trailhead (this also marked our departure from the Bridger Wilderness where we have been for the past six or so days). Instead of rocky trail, we were now walking on a sandy trail. The landscape changed from rocky peaks to flat-ish meadows and forests. It was pretty obvious that we are heading out of the mountains. It will be at least a week and a half before we expect to be back in the mountains again.

It was quite hot today. We dipped our bandanas into the creeks to cool them off before putting them on our heads to cool us off. We did this as often as we could, since the sun felt quite intense. We have seen a weather forecast which predicts cooler temperatures coming, which we are looking forward to.

We decided to hike a few extra miles today in order to shorten our walk into town tomorrow. In fact, we will go to two towns tomorrow…first, we’ll stop at South Pass City to mail ahead all of our hammock gear. Then we will continue to Atlantic City where we will pick up our resupply and all of our tent gear. While we’re not looking forward to sleeping on the ground, we know it is just temporary…hopefully just ten nights.

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CDT Day 67 – Atlantic City

Date: 8/28/20

Daily Miles: 18

Total Miles: 1186

We got up in the dark so we could get to town sooner today. By the time we started walking, it was finally light enough that we could turn off our headlamps.

The walking today was pretty easy…we started on trail and then it turned to dirt road for the rest of the day. We were able to keep a pretty good pace most of the day.

In the late morning, we came across a guy out for a ride on his horse. He asked about where we had come from and where we were going. He asked us incredulously if we were going through the Great Basin (or as he called it, the Red Desert). When we said “yes”, his response was “I hope you enjoyed what you’ve already been through, because it’s pretty ugly from here on.” That gave us a chuckle, and we had to appreciate the local honesty.

By 11:30am, we had made it into South Pass City (quite a stretch to call this a city) which was tucked in a little valley – we didn’t even see it until we were practically on top of ..

Date: 8/28/20

Daily Miles: 18

Total Miles: 1186

We got up in the dark so we could get to town sooner today. By the time we started walking, it was finally light enough that we could turn off our headlamps.

The walking today was pretty easy…we started on trail and then it turned to dirt road for the rest of the day. We were able to keep a pretty good pace most of the day.

In the late morning, we came across a guy out for a ride on his horse. He asked about where we had come from and where we were going. He asked us incredulously if we were going through the Great Basin (or as he called it, the Red Desert). When we said “yes”, his response was “I hope you enjoyed what you’ve already been through, because it’s pretty ugly from here on.” That gave us a chuckle, and we had to appreciate the local honesty.

By 11:30am, we had made it into South Pass City (quite a stretch to call this a city) which was tucked in a little valley – we didn’t even see it until we were practically on top of it. When we arrived, we met three northbound CDT hikers: Merman, Montana, and FreeStyle; as well as a section hiker, Sunshine. They were all super fun to hang out with and we enjoyed chatting with them while we had an early lunch. In fact, Montana thought that he may have gotten trail magic from us on the PCT in 2018.

We mailed ahead our hammock gear and our bear spray, so our packs were feeling really good. We were anxious to get to Atlantic City, so even though we were enjoying our time hanging with the other hikers, we figured it was time to move on. Before we left, Merman had us try some of the mead he was carrying with him (he had a 1L bottle he was carrying). It was really good!

We headed on to Atlantic City and made it in by 2:00pm. We enjoyed the rest of the day with showers, lemonade and snacks, time in the hot tub, lots of food at dinner, ice cream before bed, and good conversation with the lodge owner and several bike-packers who are riding the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route. Definitely a good day.

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The Blue Mountains Trail

So back to the BMT.

BMT stands for Blue Mountains Trail (a working title).

The Greater Hells Canyon Council has had the idea for a long-distance heritage hiking trail for years. Far longer than the Oregon Desert Trail has been around. I believe some work had been done before and there were some possible alignments on the ground, but the idea remained an idea for the most part.

A few years ago I was in La Grande to give a presentation about the ODT when Brian Kelly from the GHCC invited me for a chat. The organization wanted to make their trail happen, and wanted to pick my brain since the ODT went from 0 to fairly well established in such a short amount of time (trails can be decades-or-longer objectives for organizations)…and the model of a conservation organization creating a backpacking experience to immerse people in the landscapes they were actively trying to advocate for and protect was a common denominator.

I looked at some maps with Brian and immediately got excited about ..

So back to the BMT.

BMT stands for Blue Mountains Trail (a working title).

The Greater Hells Canyon Council has had the idea for a long-distance heritage hiking trail for years. Far longer than the Oregon Desert Trail has been around. I believe some work had been done before and there were some possible alignments on the ground, but the idea remained an idea for the most part.

A few years ago I was in La Grande to give a presentation about the ODT when Brian Kelly from the GHCC invited me for a chat. The organization wanted to make their trail happen, and wanted to pick my brain since the ODT went from 0 to fairly well established in such a short amount of time (trails can be decades-or-longer objectives for organizations)…and the model of a conservation organization creating a backpacking experience to immerse people in the landscapes they were actively trying to advocate for and protect was a common denominator.

I looked at some maps with Brian and immediately got excited about their vision. There were so many trails already on the ground in NE Oregon! The Wallowas, Hells Canyon, the Elkhorns, and more.

I suggested they think more about a route than a continuous trail, especially since there was so much trail around them already.

Routes link trails with roads and off-trail travel to meet their objective, in this case traversing the Blue Mountains. Roads are viable paths for walking and connecting to other trails. When you have a trail or a route that goes right through town, it’s a win-win for all. It makes hiker resupply and feasting opportunities infinitely easier (not to mention showers, laundry, sleeping in beds), you don’t have to spend hours trying to hitchhike to town and back, and you often meet people who like hiker stories so much that they become trail angels in these communities.

I didn’t hear much more about the trail/route idea for a while…at least a year later I met Marina Richie, a GHCC board member, who was serving with me on an Oregon state outdoor coalition. In fact, on the same coalition was Jared Kennedy, an entrepreneur who helped start the Outdoor Project website. Jared and I had already crossed paths a few years earlier through the Oregon Desert Trail.

Stay with me here…Jared’s dad is also a Greater Hells Canyon Council board member…and Jared and his dad decided to have a go at making the trail a reality. I had a series of phone calls and emails over the last six months where we talked about some good next steps. I was/am so grateful to participate in helping a new long-distance hiking opportunity launch.

So this summer Jared had a line on the map, and the plan was to see if it worked.

Some friends will be ground-truthing the route from the other end soon, and I will be following them later this fall (if all goes well). It will be wonderful to follow their notes about what goes and what doesn’t and see if I can come up with some other solutions, or avoid the worst of the bushwacking.

All and all though, it’s a grand adventure! So very exciting 😀 then I’ll have to connect it into the Oregon Desert Trail, naturally.

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Heritage Park August 30, 2020

My friend put a shout out for a photography outing at Heritage Park! I jumped on that wagon like there was no tomorrow. We last shared “out & about” time in early February so we were long overdue for a, face to face from two metres, catch up. Life happens and we go down different paths for a short distance and time, but as friends, our paths always circle back around.
These days tickets for the Park need to be purchased online in advance for a certain time slot entrance. They are offered at a discount and free parking is also offered. We met at the parking lot, discussed a plan for the day and voiced our feelings on comfort level and distancing. Why was I not surprised to find we were on the same page.
We enjoyed a gorgeous day wandering and meandering all over Heritage Park. As it was a photography outing, I do have many photos to share which are displayed below with some bundled into collages. After close to five hours of roaming, we topped off our get together savouring speciality ..

My friend put a shout out for a photography outing at Heritage Park! I jumped on that wagon like there was no tomorrow. We last shared "out & about" time in early February so we were long overdue for a, face to face from two metres, catch up. Life happens and we go down different paths for a short distance and time, but as friends, our paths always circle back around.
These days tickets for the Park need to be purchased online in advance for a certain time slot entrance. They are offered at a discount and free parking is also offered. We met at the parking lot, discussed a plan for the day and voiced our feelings on comfort level and distancing. Why was I not surprised to find we were on the same page.
We enjoyed a gorgeous day wandering and meandering all over Heritage Park. As it was a photography outing, I do have many photos to share which are displayed below with some bundled into collages. After close to five hours of roaming, we topped off our get together savouring speciality drinks while sitting on the shore of the Glenmore Reservoir.
Thank you for today! I look forward to when we circle back around again!

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