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[cdt-l] atlernate routes in Montana

Ryan - chances are Chris wants to connect his steps, not just hitch around 
sections that are less interesting.  That's what makes it a thruhike, 
generally.  If possible, we do try to connect the dots - on foot and not by 
car.  Sometimes it's not possible, but if you start out planning to skip the 
boring parts, it becomes very hard to finish the trail.  It's hard to 
explain, but I've seen it often on the AT. The CDT has fewer dull connector 
bits than most long trails, but there are a few (the awful roadwalks near 
Rawlins and the Rabbit Ears come to mind.)  Even so, most of us try to do a 
continuous journey, if weather, fires and forest closures permit.

You do have some interesting ideas though - and what Chris might want to do 
is get the Delorme atlas for Montana, mark routes through the mountain 
ranges, as recommended, and then see how he can connect the dots, using 
backroads.  That's pretty much what we did in NM, before there were 
guidebooks for the state.  Chris, you might see if any of the Montana hiking 
guides (i.e. the Falcon books) have interesting routes through the mountain 
ranges between the Beartooths and Butte.  I remember there were a lot of 
mountains visible to the south (Snowy Range?) so  if you want a mountain 
route, you can probably create an interesting one minimizing paved roads,and 
still have your hike through the Tetons and the Absarokas.  (The Beartooths 
are more interesting, more alpine, but probably too far east for your needs.


PS - I loved the Bitterroots.  It's sage country, but I really thought it 
was beautiful.

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