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Water on the Colorado Trail?
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Traeger Meyer
(traegerm) - F
Water on the Colorado Trail? on 08/05/2010 15:27:26 MDT Print View

My wife and I and our dog are going to be starting a 2 week trip on the CT on Saturday, westbound. I have read that water can be a bit more scarce during these late summer months. Has anyone been on the first 300 miles of westbound trail (from waterton) recently that could give me a heads up?

We are carrying a hard sided 32 oz nalgene and 2 soft side 48oz nalgenes, but of course I would rather keep those 48oz'ers empty unless a particular section is super dry (such as through the hayman burn area) our water treatment consists of a bamboo towel to filter the chunks out followed by katadyn chlorine tabs.


Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Re: Water on the Colorado Trail? on 08/05/2010 17:08:18 MDT Print View

Waterton Canyon is closed as of Aug 02 so you are not starting there.

I just got back from doing segments 1 - 3 on July 22-24. There are several water sources in segment 1 but NONE in segment 2. Load up at the South Platte River crossing before you start up into segment 2.

Supposedly, you can get emergency water from a tap behind the unmanned firehouse 1/4 mile to the right of where the CT crosses road 126 near the end of segment 2.

There is no more water until the two streams at 2.1 and 2.8 miles into segment 3. The so-called "First reliable water" at mile 1.3 in segment 3 is totally dry.

I got out at the end of seg 3; it was just too darn hot to keep climbing those rutted trails.

Good luck.

Edited by wandering_bob on 08/05/2010 17:10:52 MDT.

John Devitt
(cabana) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
h2o on 08/05/2010 22:51:35 MDT Print View

I just got back from segs 7,8,&9. Lots of water flowing and many springs. Those ruts let up after seg 6. I hope to not have to hike in those ruts, my ankle does too.

Jacob Linton

Locale: Western NC
Water on 08/06/2010 22:57:10 MDT Print View

Just finished a thru, so my info for these segments is a couple weeks old, but I remember segments 18 and 19 being pretty dry.
I definitely walked by some crummy sources, so maybe I was just being picky.
I do think that the water through there was pretty evenly spaced though.
I was only using Aquamira, so I avoided some of the dirtier water and made it through just fine, but depending on where you're planning on camping this could be a factor.
Hope that helps.