Aug 22nd-26th, 2019
Rejuvenated after a relaxing afternoon in camp we hit the trail with a new found bounce in our step. From Lakeview Campground the trail skirts around Twin Lakes before climbing back up into the mountains. At this point in the trail we decided to take the Collegiate East, partially because I wanted to save the Collegiate west for when I hike the Continental Divide Trail, but also we’d heard it was a bit easier.
The Collegiate East route was gorgeous. We had great weather and the terrain was mostly easy going. Just a couple days outside of Salida the crew was excited for getting to town. In Salida we’d be taking our first zero day of the trip, and celebrating Katie’s birthday.
At this point in our CT journey we’d managed to avoid having to hitchhike. Our crew had mixed feelings about having to hitchhike. Some of us were comfortable and had done lots of hitching, and some of us had a bit more consternation about the experience. In preparation for the hitch we spent a few minutes gathering ourselves and attempting to make ourselves presentable. We stacked our packs neatly, so that it was clear we were backpackers. We stowed our trekking poles, as they can be a bit intimidating for non hikers. And we put on our best smiles, with Katie out in front. It wasn’t even five minutes before a minivan stopped and the driver offered us a ride into Salida. Not only was our experience pleasant, it turned out that the woman that gave us a ride has a brother that lives only blocks from us in Montana. It was a great hitch!
Rolling into Salida we were all excited to enjoy some real food and a shower. Welcome to Salida!