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[cdt-l] Chief Joseph Pass

Hi All,

The Gathering did much to fuel the fire to hike the CDT.  Thanks those who
contributed; you know who you are.  Still a lot more research and planning
to do and I would like to post a series of questions for those out there
listening who have been there before.  So let us begin...

>From Chief Joseph Pass, there are three basic options for
maildrop/resupply/stayover (well, O.K. four perhaps):

a) Wisdom, MT (going east 25 miles on MT 43)
b) Sula, MT (first going west 1 mile on MT 43 to Lost Trail Pass then 12.5
miles north on US 93)
c) Gibbonsville, ID (1 mile to Lost Trail Pass then 13 miles south on US 93
and what looks to be a 1 mile east on a side road)
d) Salmon, ID (1 mile to Lost Trail Pass then 45 miles south on US 93)

Wisdom has traditionally been the most popular option for thru-hikers.  It
has a concentrated collection of motels, restaurants, laundromat, PO, small
grocery, free camping somewhere around town (for the cost-conscious).
However, traffic on 43 is light so getting back and forth may take more time
than usual.  US 93 would appear to have more traffic on it than 43.  David
recommends using either Gibbonsville or Sula.  He relays that the lady
running the Mexican restaurant in Gibbonsville is willing (perhaps eager?)
to accept maildrop packages (P.O. in Lynne's video is closed and there is no
grocery).  Lodging available there in the form of cabins, tentsites, or Lost
Trail Inn Motel/Tavern.  Going to Sula to its P.O., halfway there is the
Lost Trail Natural Hot Springs Resort which will hold packages and has a
small store, not to mention restaurant and lodging (possibly pricey?).
(David mentioned a "KOA" campground; is this the same place?)  At Sula
itself, there is a country store, restaurant, and RV campground; the P.O. is
another 1.5 miles N (further along US 93) from the center of town.  Salmon
has everything but far away so confidence in being picked up is necessary.
(If any of this information is wrong or out-of-date, please post your
corrections to the list.)

I would like to hear back from someone who has used either Sula or
Gibbonsville (even Salmon) as an ACTUAL maildrop/resupply/stayover (instead
of Wisdom) during a long-distance hike?  If so for either, what was its
convenience? ability to get back and from trailhead? how long before you got
a ride? expensive?  For those who had used Wisdom, how long before you got a

Be interesting to see if there are any responses and if some future
thru-hikers take the alternate options instead of the traditional one.



Ref: a) "Alternative Routes for the Continentental Divide Trail," David
Patterson, White Root Press, January 1999.
b) "CDT towns," Jim and Ginny Owen, CDT-L posting, February 3, 2000.
-> http://www.backcountry.net/arch/cdt/00/msg00011.html
c) "Continental Divide Trail Workshop," David Patterson, Hanover, NH,
October 6, 2001.
d) "How to Hike the Continental Divide Trail," Lynne Whelden, (1999?)
e) Topo USA 3.0 (software), DeLorme, 2001.