Day 80 - almost done with this road reroute (20.0 miles)
Updated: Aug 13
July 28, 2021
Miles: 20.0 miles
Just when I didn’t think things could get worse after my tent breaking right before bedtime, over night I got a hole in my air mattress. I know I just need to get it submerged under water and can find the hole to patch up easily, I’ve done it already this trip.
Got up at 4:45am just in case a car decided to run over the barricade. Also, the earlier I got moving the earlier I get to town to eat as I didn’t have much food for those last 20 miles.
Stopped in Jackson, MT while everyone was sleeping and looked for a water hose to fill up. I went by the hostel in town and found one.
Then I walked the paved highway all the way to Wisdom, MT. It was pretty much straight north, very little curves, so made for a very boring day.
Weather wise it wasn’t too bad but the air quality was its worst yet. I expected that as I was the closest to the large fire in the area.
Hiking all day I couldn’t see any of the mountains. I would guess visibility was 4-5 miles at best. Also, could really smell that smoke. The sooner I get out of this area the better.
Got into Wisdom around noon time, just in time for lunch. Went to one of the few restaurants in town and had a double burger.
After lunch I made a quick stop at the small grocery store for dessert. Then off to see about getting a motel room for 2 nights. The first motel was full so I went to the only other one and no one was there. I waited for close to 2 hours and the owners finally showed up. Even though their sign said vacancy they said they were full. I think a lot of the firefighters are staying here in Wisdom.
I didn’t expect there to be no room. I did try to call yesterday but never got through. Plus I didn’t have cell reception much.
My only other option was to camp at the RV park as it was too late to hike as I didn’t want another late night looking for a campsite. The only problem with that was my tent was still broken, I had planned to get that fixed tomorrow. But my only choice was the RV park, would get some supplies to fix it. Since the town is all booked up it didn’t seem like this was the best time to take a zero day. I’ll be in Anaconda, MT in 3 days and it’s a much bigger town with more things and more hiker friendly. So I’ll head out in the morning.
Right after getting to the RV park it started to rain. Luckily they have a little building with restrooms and showers. After taking a shower I I left my gear in that building and walked back to the grocery store to resupply and get something to fix my tent.
I figured super glue would work the best or try to get a piece of metal wedged in. I did walk by an auto repair shop to see if they could weld it or if they had any other suggestions. The guy said welding wouldn’t work and had no suggestions.
After the grocery store I stopped for dinner at the pizza place. I ate most of the pizza and took the rest back with me.
Back at the RV park I started fixing my tent. I tried 2 types of super glues and it just wasn’t working like I hoped. The metal screw wouldn’t fit in. I then thought to try duct tape again but since I had more time, unlike last night, I could get it done right. After a good amount of tape I got it so it would mostly stay in place. I set my tent it up and seemed to work. I was able to get the rain fly on it. It just might work I guess, not sure how it will handle in a storm. I will just need to be careful of where I camp and be gentle with the poles.
Also, while I was waiting for the super glue to dry on the poles I tried to find the hole in my air mattress. It’s much easier to submerged it under water but not really any option at the moment. So I filled it with air and laid on it to listen for air escaping. I figured the hole would be on the bottom but heard nothing so I turned it over and sure enough I found it. I used my patch kit and appeared to work.
The plan is to leave in the morning and hike the 19 miles back to the CDT. Let’s hope my tent and air mattress make it through the night and the next 3 weeks.
Also I hope the farther I move awhile from the area the better the air quality. I really hope it’s clear by the time I get to Glacier. The rain seemed to get rid a lot of the haze but we’ll see how long that last.