Miles Hiked: 30.4
Total Milage: 699.1
Location: Weasel Spring
Last night I slept great however I still felt extremely tired when I woke up at 5:15 am. Besides a cow waking me up by mooing very loudly around 2am, I think I got about 8 hours of sleep. 12 pack and I started hiking just before 6am. It was still cold enough to hike with a hoodie, puffy and gloves for the first three miles.
The first exciting thing that happened today was walking through South Pass City. It’s a historic gold mine camp that was thriving in the 1860s but quickly died out within 10 years. I took my time checking out the buildings and reading the information signs. It would be a really cool place to visit while they are actually open! We were the only ones who seemed to be moving around before 7am. Afterwards, we continued hiking south. There were a few very steep and short climbs at the beginning of the day that really kicked my butt. I thought this section was supposed to be flat! I think I was just really tired and my body is adjusting back to hiking big mile days again. For 10 miles we hiked on a hard packed dirt road to Sweetwater bridge. The time went by very fast but my feet, ankles, and knees were aching by the time we got there. 12 pack and I took an hour and a half break for lunch. We had already hiked 15 miles by 11:30! To reward myself I ate one of my favorite trail meals ever, a southwest breakfast skillet from mountain house. Thanks mom! While we were eating, two other hikers passed by going Northbound. Their names were Honey and Repeat and they also hiked from Mexico to Colorado about the same time we did this year. They plan to hike north to Montana skipping all the snowy mountain sections and doing them last. They live near Chama New Mexico so they will be saving the San Juan range for their finish because it’s so close to home. It was great to see other hikers who flip flopped!
After the break at the bridge we pretty much hiked on dirt/sandy roads for the rest of the day. The terrain was a wide open field of short bushes on rolling hills. In the backdrop to the North, we could see the snowy wind river range. The mountains made for a great view at every break. I thought the hiking was extremely easy and manageable today but my body was aching so much. For some reason my knees and ankles were really bothering me which is somewhat unusual. I think I twisted both of the joints so much in the snow last week that they are just sore. I’m hoping the aching goes away in the next week.
We ended up meeting two other hikers today. A guy named UV? was heading North. He hiked almost the whole trail last year but still has to finish the Basin (the section we are doing right now) and everything North of Yellowstone. At camp, we met “Mary Badass”. She is an older lady who hiked both the AT and PCT in a 13 month time frame about 40 years ago. I believe she is hiking North currently. She did the first half of the CDT last summer. She also doesn’t want to hike in snow ever again after her experiences on the other two trails. She was super cool to meet! When we ended up setting up camp next to her she told us she only got to camp with other people four times last year. I couldn’t imagine!
12 pack and I stopped hiking when we got to a water source around 6:30. Both of us were so tired and sore from today. I was tempted to keep hiking further just because it’s such easy terrain and we have lots of daylight left but my body was so ready to be done. I wanted to do some very high mileage days in the Basin, possibly my longest day of hiking ever, but I think I will hold off. My body is hurting too bad to push it too hard and risk injury. I can tell 12 pack wants to take it easy too.