We are currently on another long distance hike, and the third leg of our "triple crown", the Continental Divide Trail (the "CDT"). Come along with us if you can - if not in person then by following our grand adventure via our "posts from the trail".  Check out our Flickr Photos, which we'll update periodically, and see it through our eyes!

Our Credo...

"Success: To laugh often and much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children, to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends, to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded!" ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Journal June 15 Fun in the Canyons

We woke to a cool damp morning, a novel way to start the day so far on this leg of our CDT journey. The ground was damp with dew, the inside of the tent wet from condensation and anything touching the ground was wet on the bottom from wicking moisture up.

Although we were on the lookout for the trail out of the bottom lands, we walked too far on the old road eventually seeing that the side ridges and canyons didn’t look right. Through a combination of searching, GPS and map work, we found a hiker made cairn on the far side of the creek at the mouth of a dry stream bed, bushwhacked up it a ways and came to the ruins of an old corral, on the other side of which there was a very faint trail.

We climbed slowly along the rocky, crooked canyon and upon reaching it’s head joind an old 4wd road marked with cairns. The old road contoured around the mountain becoming more of a memory than a road. Jagged rocks dotted the sandstone, hard and slick in places and disintegrating back to sand in others. Slow going. Small puddles of rainwater, left over from yesterday’s morning showers, were found in the occasional surface depression.

We dropped into Sycamore Canyon following faint trail and old cairns, occasionally both losing and regaining the pathway. Rough footing in the canyon bottom and the need to ocasionally consult the GPS again made the going slow.

The climb out of Sycamore Canyon to Tadpole Ridge has been described as a difficult bushwhack through a burned area choked with downed trees and thick and thorny brush. Much to our relief, the trail has been cleared of brush and well blazed. It’s still steep, but otherwise was an improvement over the last several miles of trail.

Towards the top ridgeline we came across our first on-trail spring. A slow flowing one, so we pumped water, but much relieved to see it. At the top of the pass where we met up with the Tadpole Ridge trail, the Jim Wolfe (CDTS) preferred route we topped out at about 8,000 feet, our highest elevation so far.

Descending through Sheep Corral Canyon we surprised a Black Bear foraging in the dry creek bed. In a burst of sound and speed he ran straight up the steep hillside. We kept walking and just as the trail left the canyon we got water from some stagnant but clearish pools. The trail climbed a ridge to intersct a jeep road and just as darkness was descending we found a flat spot to camp under the stars.

The night cooled off enough to pull out the fleece hats.

13.5 miles

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Clicking on any of these photos will take you to that specific photo on our Flickr Stream, where you can view these and many, many more photos from our latest adventure....or use this shortcut to all photos.....we hope you enjoy them!

People Shots

CDT20101_NMWCWMCDT2010_TheTrailCDT2010_NMWC-1Carrot After a Trail BathCarrot Stream Crossing #3,768Carrot on the Trail stillCarrot takes a Trail BathCarrot Stream Crossing #5.875Carrot on the TrailCliff Dwelling SignCarrot takes a PhotoCarrot Stream Crossing # 2,115

Scenic Shots

CDT2010-valleyCDT2010_yellowflowersCarrot on the Trail 3ScenicPotty BreakScenicCliff Dwelling Stream Vast DesertPrickly Pear 2Prickly PearPlateau at Sunset

Flora & Fauna

CDT2010_treesCDT2010_yellowflowersCDT2010-purpleflowersAngry MarmotFlora 3FloraBeaverButterfly 2FloraButterfly