CDT Days 115-116: From Lincoln to Augusta

Day 115: 19 Miles

It was a tough and windy day today. We had lots of climbing up ridges, and lots of time above the trees, so there was little windbreak. It was a day to put in the headphones, put the head down and brace against the wind.

We managed to get a half mile off trail at one point, and spent several miles in a severely burned forest. Finally in the evening the wind died down, and the scenery improved a little as well, so we got some nice views for all the climbing.

All the water was off trail today, so we just rationed until the evening and camped near water. Tomorrow should be easier terrain and a lot more water, so we hope to get a big day in.

Day 116: 36 Miles

We got up early this morning with the goal of making it to Benchmark, the trailhead where we will hitch into Augusta for resupply. It was a cold morning but we started with climbing and warmed right up.

The first 20 miles of the day flew by, even with 2 wrong turns adding up to about a mile of off-trail travel. The afternoon was flat and easy, and the haze lifted to offer some really nice views. Unfortunately, we got some bad news today, the CDT is closed a few miles ahead in the Bob Marshall Wilderness. We won’t be able to hike through one of the highlights of the entire trail, and that’s a big fat bummer.

Fortunately, we will still be able to walk an alternate that stays on trails and looks like it will be pleasant and easy travel. I guess we’ll have to come back here to explore the Bob when it’s not on fire.