CDT Days 77-80: The Wind River Range to Dubois, Wyoming

Day 77: 32 Miles

Although we were generally a little lower than yesterday, it was another breathtaking day today in The Winds.

The terrain was pretty smooth this morning, and we made a pretty good pace until lunchtime. The afternoon was a bit more challenging. We went over 5 passes in about 10 miles, the last of which was 11,500 feet. It was tiring but led to the best views of the day.

More towering granite peaks, tons of lakes and streams and wildflowers. We had high expectations for these mountains but they have definitely been exceeded.

Day 78: 34 Miles

It was cold this morning and we were slow to get out of bed. Our day started with a climb over a pass, and it was a little tougher than we expected with a decent amount of snow.

The lakes and streams are definitely higher than usual, and the ground is very muddy. Both today and yesterday we forded many creeks and streams, so our feet have been constantly wet. This afternoon we followed the Green River and the Green River Lakes.

Many people were hiking, boating, and camping along the river. We had great views back to the mountain peaks, and stopped for dinner before we left the lake to enjoy the views. In the evening we hiked up to the Roaring Fork River where we set up camp for the night.

Day 79: 33 Miles

Today was another wet feet day, with many creek crossings to negotiate. We’re leaving the Wind River Range behind us as we head down toward town and toward Yellowstone.

We’ve been conserving calories over the last six days to make sure we don’t run out of food, and the deficit is catching up. Today was a little boring and a little frustrating. The terrain was easier, but constantly cutting across country over marshy or rutted dirt. There were few trail blazes and several unmarked junctions, so we found ourselves off trail and had to cut up a steep hill to get back on track. At the end of the day we had to negotiate with a huge herd of cows that didn’t want to get out of the way, and then get our feet wet crossing a literally shitty cow stream.

I think we’re ready for town. We did have some really cool views of the Tetons today though.

Day 80: 15 Miles

Town! We got up early this morning and dealt with a little more annoying terrain and a few more cows before we got on a dirt road and had easy cruising down to the road. We made it to the highway by 11:00 but it took an hour to get a ride to town. We split a hotel room with three other hikers, got cleaned up and ate real food!

It’s been something like 10 days since we had a shower. We got our Yellowstone permits squared away, and will have a slightly easier pace through the park. Looking forward to the next section.