CDT mile 1669.3, miles hiked 22.8
We enjoyed some fresh coffee and freshly baked muffins at the lodge and then set off on our final stretch of highway to get back to the trail. A few miles up the road we saw a road that leads to Brooks Lake where the trail went, it was a dirt road and we all agreed to get off the pavement and take that option. Much to our surprise J Ley has it listed as a purple alternate so we were sort of back on trail already.
We arrived at Brooks Lake a lovely lake tucked up against the pinnacles, which are series of sharp Rocky peaks. The smoke had mad a haze though so pictures didn’t work out too well. We had done over 8 miles so we took our first break. We sat at the water’s edge and soaked our feet and ankles. Much to my surprise, the swelling in my ankle had gone down a lot and the pain was less than the past few days. We snacked and then headed out.
The trail was pretty mellow, we passed some lakes, walked through meadows and enjoyed the granite peaks that were rising above us. We stopped at Little Cub Creek for lunch, we spread out our tents and sleeping bags to dry out the condensation. We had a leisurely lunch before hitting the trail and our last big climb of the day.
Even though we are doing fewer miles a day right now I was a bit sluggish after lunch so at 4:45 after going over 20 miles we stopped by a creek and while the others swam I laid down for a nap. Man, letting Johnny get his trail legs is helping my body get back in shape and get well rested. When I awoke we made dinner and then set off at 6 to do a few more miles. We climbed up from the valley and had some great views of big granite peaks and the valley below.
It started to rain as we climbed but none of us cared. The rain was warm and gentle not like the icy cold downpours we had experienced already on the trail. It’s nearly August and it finally feels like summer had arrived. We walked until the rain stopped and then walked through a meadow and over a creek. Since we had made our miles and it was Johnny’s second day we stopped hiking and made camp.
Johnny is a lot of fun and great guy he told me he felt great and could do more miles. Cheezy and I chatted about plans after this week, we have decided when we reach Old Faithful they will decide if they can go back to doing the required 25-26mpd or if they will need to go slower. If they need to go slower I’ll carry on with my hike solo for the time being and see if my friend Tatu-Jo can catch me in Leadore or some other town up the way. Personally, I would love to finish the trail with Cheezy, we have hiked a lot of miles together and I have seen her grow so much personally that seeing her succeed with completing the trail would be a real reward. Well, I guess I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it in a few days until then more sleeping and napping is in my future!