Day 75: 28 Miles
We slept in a little this morning, tired from our push through the basin. We did 100 miles the past three days and were ready for a slower pace today.
As we left, we managed to lose the trail about three times in the first mile. This trend continued through the day, and we lost the track quite a few times. I’m so grateful for GPS on this trail. It really is convenient to be able to check and know exactly where you are and which way the trail is.
As the day progressed and we made our way up into the mountains, the scenery gradually changed. How good it feels to be back to the trees and to flowing water!
Day 76: 25 Miles
Today was tough but incredible. In a drastic change of scenery we have moved from perhaps the most barren to the most incredible landscape we’ve ever been in.
Today was easily one of my favorite days on trail ever. We took the highly recommended Cirque of the Towers alternate. It’s higher and more challenging than the main trail, but the views were amazing, constantly changing, and seemingly just getting better and better.
We met up with two other hikers we know, and spent most of the day hiking with them. It worked out well as the trail was hard to follow and sometimes non-existent, so having more eyes to navigate is helpful.
We climbed over huge boulder fields, around lakes, under massive granite walls, straight up over snow covered passes, and straight down rocky crumbling mountainside. Words can’t do it justice, so I’ll try and let pictures do it, but they can’t really either.
Did you guys use an actual GPS unit, or just something like Guthook? Also, did you carry any paper maps or just electronic?
We both had guthook and Ley maps on our phones. We carried paper maps in the San Juans, but never felt the need for them otherwise. We also had a Spot in case of emergency.