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[cdt-l] back from 2001 hike



>Jonathan Ley wrote:
>Are there any other 2001'ers out there?

Hi Jonathan and the rest of you CDT-Lers!

This 2001'er is back on the list too!  Congratulations on your finish 
Jonathan.  It was a pleasure walking with you into Steamboat Springs.  
You're one of the few people I couldn't keep up with, at least in the short 
run.

I agree with your assessment of water availability.  There's plenty of 
water, although the quality is bad at times.

And I also agree that Jim Wolf's guidebooks are the ones to use.  I disliked 
having both an old guidebook and a supplement to piece together, but unlike 
people using the "Official" guides, I was seldom lost.  And Jim's route 
suggestions, although tough going, were usually worth any extra effort.  His 
routes are also extremely direct.  I could seldom find a viable shortcut 
that he hadn't already mentioned.  But be forewarned.  Shorter is often not 
faster.  Many shorter, more scenic old routes have been superceded by 
apparently less desireable new routes.  In planning I was unable to resist 
some of the old routes.  (Shorter AND better! Why not?!)  They were VERY 
easy to get lost on.  A lot can change in 20 years on a route that sees no 
maintenance and almost no use.  A good rule of thumb is not to take any 
questionable route unless you'd be confident doing it cross-country.  
Typically that meant that I was glad when I chose a ridge walk or an above 
tree-line cross country route, but often wished I'd taken the better-marked 
of two roads or trails through the trees.

Sorry for the long post, but here's another lesson that I learned the hard 
way.  Don't follow the tread blindly.  Trust the blazes.  It's often the 
case that the CDT gets much more animal traffic than human traffic.  Animals 
will follow the CDT until it nears a meadow.  Their  tread then goes 
straight into the meadow and vanishes.  Look for lesser tread that follows 
the blazes.  That's the CDT.

Flyin' Brian
Calendar Triple Crown '01

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