When the weather was warm it was easy to get up early, hike 20 mile days and stick to a schedule. Then it got cold. (Yes, I realize I will more than likely be cold til, well Wyoming.) Cold mornings mean late starts, short days and low miles. So I am “behind schedule” so to speak. But then plans tend to change daily out here, I should know better.
We had planned to roll in and out of Ghost Ranch, nope. A storm rolled in just as we picked up our winter gear packages. $35.00 campsite in the rain didn’t sound appealing so we hopped a free shuttle to Sante Fe. That didn’t pan out either. The bus dropped us “near” a hotel way out of price range. We must have been a sight, walking in the rain, full packs, carrying axes and boxes! See ya Santa Fe, we hopped the bus back to a town called Espanola. Good place, friendly people and cheap motels. Valerie at the Days Inn even offered a ride 30 miles back to the trail!
Now I like town days (especially when Survivor happens to be on) showers, sleeping in a bed, reorganizing my pack (where do I attach this ice axe? ), and watching it snow from inside! But honestly all that sitting around zaps your trail legs.
Back on trail we were moving pretty slow to start. But then Kelsey got sick and the snow got deeper. So what was a section that was supposed to take 4 days to hike took 6 days.
Then as we were packing up I tore a huge hole in my backpack! I patched it up with duct tape and a sleeping pad patch kit. Hopefully it will hold.
Now I’m not complaining, ok yes I am. It is SO cold and crazy windy. Even had to break out the crampons for the steep section into Chama. Thanks to the warmers from Leslie the nights have been warmer! Hot coffee in the morning is a great warm up too!
On the upside, made it to Colorado!! 800 miles done. Plus so much more wildlife, a lot of elk, turkey’s, (chipmunks) little beasties tried to take my gummy bears, and paw prints I have yet to identify. Over appreciating nature one mile at a time!