A few weeks ago my AT trail buddy Nasty Noodle told me he had decided to hike the Colorado Trail. I didn’t know much about it but after a few minutes of research it looked like something that would be great to join him for a bit of. He is going to complete the full 500 mile trail but Taco and I are joining him for the first 140 miles from the South Platte River up to Leadville. Today was our first day and it was so beautiful. So different from the AT and in so many good ways. The views are big and open and the first segment is all high desert and aspen stands as we got above 8,000 feet.
I really wanted to get Taco back out on the trail since his AT experience was cut so short because of the virus. We drove out here from Atlanta and the poor guy had to deal with 22 hours stuck in the car. We spent our first night in St. Louis and then we made the 13 hour jump across Kansas to Denver. Thank goodness for my new favorite podcast called Ear Hustle and was able to catch up on the episodes that I had been missing.
It was great to be back with Noodle. I had really missed his energy and crazy stories. We fell right back into our constant hiker chatter about gear, miles and food. He is such a positive person and I get a lot out of being around his attitude towards life. I think that is what I most enjoyed about being with Boogie and Scoobie too. They are determined to get through these crazy times being hopeful about the future. There isn’t a lot of that out there right now.
Speaking of – Boogie and Scoobie officially finished their 2,193 mile thru hike yesterday in Bland, Virginia. Not the most inspiring town for a finish line but Boogie’s brother fixed that right up with a beautiful sign and a balloon rainbow. They look so happy in this picture and I’m so impressed that they found a way to get this done this year. They are off to start college in a few weeks and what a great way kick off their freshman year.
We hiked 16 miles today and are going to let Taco set the pace. He is doing great with the hiking and the elevation but I don’t want to push him too hard. We will climb up above 10,000 feet tomorrow and stay there for the rest of the hike. I acclimated him slowly in Denver and then we drove to Cooper and Leadville for the night. Our hike today started at 6,000 feet and we slowly got above 8,000 today. He got a kick out of seeing this beautiful doe today and he was especially impressed with his first black squirrel sighting. I will try to get a picture of one for you but they are not so keen on posing for my blog photos. They don’t know what they are missing.