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[CDT-L] Update: Flight of the Spirit Eagle

More from the hikers!!
BTW....I have forwarded the notes to them but you can write to
them directly via e-mail to
"Jim and/or Ginny Owen" <spiriteagle99@hotmail.com>
or by post office by addressing to

General Delivery
Leadore, ID 83464

and adding, at the bottom
Please hold for CDT hikers Jim and/or Ginny Owen

Their schedule sets them there on July 14
and on July 24  at Macks Inn, ID 83433

Greetings from the SpiritEagle winter mountaineering expedition!

We made it into Wisdom Montana, though there was some doubt about it for a
while.  Not just dangerous snow chutes, but my usual luck (all bad) with
hitchhiking.  Almost two hours before a ranching couple picked us up and
brought us in for some very overdue showers (and ice cream!)

The past week we have been traversing the Anaconda-Pintler range - beautiful
and very challenging.  We were climbing over 5000' each day - and a lot of
that was in snow.  We had a couple of really nice lakeside campsites,
followed by climbs straight up snow-covered passes that made me really doubt
whether we have any claim to sanity at all.  The views almost made up for
the danger - almost. On the 4th of July we were snailed upon (snow + hail =
snail); today it is about 90 degrees down in the Big Hole Valley - this is a
most unpredictable trail.  We have had hints that summer may finally be
arriving, but we won't believe that until we can walk more than 24 hours
without crossing a snow drift or being snowed upon.

The July 4th crowds were out and we ran into more people than we've seen in
the past 5 weeks - about 2 a day.  Not much wildlife unfortunately, just a
few elk and deer.

A word about trail magic.  We were told before we left not to expect any
trail magic out here.  They lied.  From Mark Howser in East Glacier, trail
angel extraordinaire, who has been incredibly kind to us, to the woman on
the road who saw us, asked if we were thruhiking, then went home to get some
goodies to speed us on our journey and offered us a place to stay, to the
owner of Frontiertown who also offered us a free room and shower, and gave
us a ride into Helena when we had to refuse, to the woman in the RV who
insisted we take some ice because she had nothing else to  offer on a very
hot day, to the woman in Anaconda who drove us to the store and waited while
we went grocery shopping, to the kind people, here at the Nez Perce Hotel
and elsewhere who offered to let us use their computers so we could stay in
touch - there are trail angels everywhere.  Every small kindness is
remembered with such pleasure.

Anyhow, we may be here for a couple of days resting up.  Jim's tendonitis is
much worse, as is the pinched nerve caused by the hip belt. The first can be
cured by rest, the second would only be curable by a lighter pack.
Unfortunately, we keep having a strange desire to eat, and food weighs us
down. We look forward to the day we can ship the ice axes and snow gaiters
home, but that won't be for a while.

Talk to you later.

Walk softly,

Jim and Ginny
Flight of the Spirit Eagle

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To:            bgurwell@hotmail.com