Day 46 - the blow downs almost broke me (33.6 miles)
June 24, 2021 Miles: 33.6 miles
It was sure nice to sleep inside as it rained some last night and would have had to pack up a wet tent. Plus it stayed warm in the hut all night. We did get woken up by some people coming in at 5:30am to use the bathroom but thats when we had planned to get up.
Had a nice climb to start off the day, wasn’t too bad. We did run into another hiker on the way down and passed him but later caught back up.
The way down wasn’t the easiest as not much of a trail to follow but we knew the general direction to go. Near the bottom we got some water which is when the other hiker caught up and joined us for a few miles.
Then it was the last long, hard hill of the day, up James Peak. It was steep at times but we got up in no time. After doing all these long steep climbs it now feels easy. The other hiker, Peaches, was trying to get me and Swift to do the road walk with him as they were calling for afternoon thunderstorms. We figured we could beat it even though we had a long exposed ridge walk.
The ridge walk had some great views but it was hard to walk on. There really wasn’t much of a trail, just followed post in the ground. Also, we were hiking on a sloop with lots of rocks which just tore up my feet.
We finally got off that rocky trail and onto a normal one. Then is when the dark clouds started to catch us. It wasn’t much farther to tree line so we booked it and made it.
Soon after getting under the trees the rain, thunder and lightning got started. I hung around a little longer but Swift figured since we were below tree line it was safe, I waited another 30 minutes.
While I waited out the storm, Swift text me saying there were blow downs ahead and stay to the left.
Those were the worst blow downs I had ever seen. It took me an hour to get through them and went less than a mile. I fell so many times I’m surprised I didn’t get hurt, got a few scrapes.
I ended up running into Swift later, I thought he was long gone as I figured it would be dark when I arrived into camp.
Once I caught up with Swift, the rain had started back up again and started running into more blow downs as it we started to get dark. We decided just camp at the next spot, about 2 miles from where we wanted. It was getting pretty miserable. All I wanted to do was change out of my wet clothes and get into my warm sleeping bag.
That mile section of blow downs almost broke me. It never seemed like it was going to end. I did some scream and almost some crying.
Tomorrow it’s 20 miles of flat trail to Grand Lake where I’ll get to relax for a day at a friend’s cabin. I might even take a zero.