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Advice on CT Segment Hike
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Clint Lum
(clintlum91) - F
Advice on CT Segment Hike on 04/30/2012 17:07:38 MDT Print View

I would appreciate some insight from you guys. I will be starting in Denver and going to Kenosha Pass at least. (70-80 miles) Also I do not think I will be doiing a re-supply

Im sure there is a lot of redundancy in the list, this is the first go round of the list.

Thanks in advance

EDIT: I will be doing the trip from May 11th ish to the 19th ish. Sorry for not mentioning that!

Edited by clintlum91 on 04/30/2012 17:56:56 MDT.

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Advice on CT Segment Hike on 04/30/2012 17:46:53 MDT Print View

You didn't say when you're planning to do this.

Segments 1-6 are, for the most part, relatively low (except Georgia Pass) with gentle elevation changes. Frankly, if you can reach the parking lot at Kenosha Pass alright, you can make it all the way to Breckenridge (total 105 miles).

By stopping at Breck, you'll have a much easier time getting off trail and then back on trail again the next time. There is a famous hiker-friendly hostel (Fireside Inn B&B) and good public transportation available in Breck. The free Summit Co. bus stops right across the highway from the CT at the end of segment 6; it can take you into Breck, Frisco, Copper Mountain, or Leadville - or any combination of those. There's a $5 one-way charge for the Copper to Leadville segment and reservations are strongly suggested.

Edited by wandering_bob on 04/30/2012 17:49:45 MDT.

Clint Lum
(clintlum91) - F
Re: Advice on CT Segment Hike on 04/30/2012 18:01:37 MDT Print View

thanks for the response Bob,

If I park at Kenosha and get off at Brek is there any public transportation that will get me back to Kenosha so I can get my car? Because I was going to get off at Kenosha and try to Hitch to Pine Junction and hop on a bus from there back to Denver

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Public Transportation on 04/30/2012 18:40:31 MDT Print View

Check out PMags blog. He's a member here and has a lot of resources on the CT.

I'm not aware of public transportation from Brek to Kenosha. There is a campground and scenic overlook at Kenosha pass to you might be able to find a ride there. Its not a super busy road though so you might wait a bit.

Edited by Cameron on 04/30/2012 18:41:11 MDT.

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Re: Re: Advice on CT Segment Hike on 04/30/2012 18:46:08 MDT Print View

Public transportation, no, not that I know about. However, you might get CO Mtn Express to do it, but it will cost you.

Contact CO Mountain Express ( or 1-800-525-6363). They run several shuttle vans to and from Denver airport to Frisco, Vail, Breck, etc. They might do Kenosha Pass for you. I've taken them from the Fireside Inn to DIA a couple of times.

The Denver trailhead(s) are a bear to get to. There's no public transport. The only bus that went near the place has been discontinued. You could park your car there (if that's allowed) and walk to Breck, then take CME back to Denver, but you'll probably have to take a cab to your car. Again, ask CME what they can do for you.

Looking at your gear list, I don't see any bandanas. You'll need something for a neck cape to keep the sun off you, especially in the big burn area at the start of segment 2. You'll also want sunscreen. Frankly, I'd ditch the BB cap for a wide brimmed hat; gives both sun and rain protection far better than a BB cap.

You will also want a ground sheet of some sort. Your shelter has a netting floor, and your NeoAire is vulnerable to sharp objects on the ground. Put the ground cover (Tyvek, polycryo, etc. on top of the netting floor under your pad.

Otherwise, it looks ok on the 1st pass.

For some truly targeted info, read the CT forum at A posting there for transportation help could surface a local resident to help you.

Edited by wandering_bob on 04/30/2012 18:46:51 MDT.

Clint Lum
(clintlum91) - F
Re: Re: Re: Advice on CT Segment Hike on 04/30/2012 21:33:41 MDT Print View

Good idea with the hat and bandana. Also the ground sheet is included with all the shelter info.

I am really just trying to get down to around 10 pounds somewhere but cant think of where to drop the weight without buying a lot of new gear.

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Re: Advice on CT Segment Hike on 05/01/2012 08:10:27 MDT Print View

Clint, I know that I gave you the link to pmags site last month in another thread and you said that you were excited to look at it ,but I am not sure if Yogi's new CT guide was available yet.If not you should look into it

Randy Nelson
(rlnunix) - F - M

Locale: Rockies
CT on 05/03/2012 11:16:00 MDT Print View

A few things:

I'm not telling you what to do but the alky stove can not currently be legally used on those segments as both counties those segments go through are under a fire ban at this time. We're hoping to get some significant moisture in the next week but that will probably not be enough to lift it. I personally think alky and Esbit stoves should be allowed during a stage one fire ban as the worst flare ups I've ever seen with stoves have been white gas and they are allowed. So are canister stoves as the criteria is they have to have an off switch. But my vote doesn't count. Please don't have a campfire though. 5 weeks ago there was a devastating fire here and locals are rightfully on edge. Any sign of smoke or fire is going to generate 911 calls or possibly a visitor to your camp.

I'd add light weight gaiters like Dirty Girls. They weigh next to nothing and it's nice not to have to stop and empty your shoes of small rocks every now and then.

As you've probably read, segment 2 has no water once you leave the river at the TH until the firehouse in the last mile. I haven't done segment 3 so I'm not sure where the next water is. You probably want to fill up at the spigot at the firehouse. You might also want to plan to avoid camping in segment 2 unless you don't mind carrying enough water for a dry camp.

Be aware that the bus service from Pine Junction to Denver is mainly a commuter service. The buses do not run on the weekends at all. On weekdays most runs to Denver are in the early morning. There are two run in the late afternoon. Here's the link to the schedule.

If you do hitch from Kenosha, the good news is that whoever picks you up is just as likely to be going to Denver as stopping short.

PM me if you have any questions on logistics or anything else I can help with.

Edited by rlnunix on 05/03/2012 11:17:59 MDT.

John D

Locale: CO
Re: CT on 05/03/2012 19:31:58 MDT Print View

Randy, I hadn't heard alcohol stoves were among those banned :\

I'm a little further north, and I called the Canyon Creeks ranger district a couple weeks ago about a trip I was taking. There are similar fire bans in Roosevelt and Arapaho NFs East of the Continental divide. Even though the official release only lists petroleum stoves as permitted, I asked if an alcohol stove would be legal. They told me it would be fine. I'm not 100% sure they knew what I was talking about, but I consider that I had done my due diligence and used the alcohol stove on my trip.

Are there different requirements in Pike NF in Jefferson and Park counties? Regardless, I think responsible use of an alcohol stove is pretty acceptable. I can't imagine a responsible person burning down the forest while using an alcohol stove and windscreen. Then again, many of our big fires over the past decade or two have been caused by ostensibly responsible people. I don't think a ranger would give you a ticket even if he caught you red-handed using an alcohol stove.

Randy Nelson
(rlnunix) - F - M

Locale: Rockies
Fire bans on 05/04/2012 13:59:12 MDT Print View

John, I'm glad you asked that as I had some information wrong.

For all the fire bans, they really mean all stoves have to have an off switch although they are worded differently. And I'm not surprised that someone said alky stoves were OK, some of the people in the office aren't even people who go into the backcountry and probably don't even know what an Alky stove is. Here's what I learned:

Roosevelt and Arapahoe NF do have Forest Service bans that apply to backcountry users and state:

"The use of petroleum-fueled stoves, lanterns or heating devices, provided that these devices meet the fire underwriter’s specifications for safety, is allowed."

That basically means an off switch.

Pike NF, where the first part of the CT is, does not have a fire ban of any kind.

Jefferson county, where segments 1,2,3 and maybe part of 4 (hard to tell where the county divide is on the maps I have) are, has a county wide fire ban including federal lands. BUT, they word the exception as:

"Any fires contained within liquid fueled or gas fueled stoves."

I asked them about it when the ban came out and they also said the stove has to have an off switch. But based on the wording, I can't see how they can cite you for using an alky stove. Well, they could, but it would probably be thrown out. But you can't legally use an Esbit stove which I think are even safer than alky stoves.

It was announced on the news that Park county was under a fire ban. Not exactly. What actually happened is all the fire districts in Park county have implemented their own fire bans. But these do not include federal lands. So in the National Forest in Park County, there are no restrictions at all.

James Jones
(maniacjwj) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
CT Segment HIke on 05/04/2012 15:27:49 MDT Print View

If you are coming from the east, Segment 3 doesn't have water for a couple miles. Read my blog at This was before I went SUL but I was UL. See May 28-29, 2011 for a description of Segment 3. I describe Segment 2 before that post in two parts There is NO water until that fire station on Segment 2. It won't be too hot in May, which is when I hiked it.

I would get the Colorado Trail Guide from the Colorado Trail Foundation, photocopy the pages you need for Segments 1-6. It is a VERY informative book, worth every cent. The trail has changed a lot from the old topo maps and from National Geographic trail maps. I've hiked Segments 2-5 both directions. Segments 3-4 are the nicest, in my opinion. Segment 3 has lots of water but there are LOTS of bikers. You'll be happy when you reach the Lost Creek Wilderness in Segment 4. You are walking along a stream almost all of Segment 5. There was snow covering parts of the trail in the higher elevations of Segment 5, which is what I finished up last weekend.

Have fun.

Clint Lum
(clintlum91) - F
Re: CT Segment HIke on 05/05/2012 22:36:03 MDT Print View

Thanks for the replies,

I have actually changed my plans and I will hiking South from Buena Vista because I have friends that live there and they are going to take me of a trail head and pick me up so I dont have to worry about travel only thing is I am concerned for the snow up there because it much higher elevation then starting in Denver.

Im stoked to be in that part of the state as well but Im a little worried with my sleep system I have a 30 degree enlightened quilt plus my Mont Bell down and base layers, I hope that is warm enough anybody have any exp in the area?

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Re Re CT Segment Hike on 05/05/2012 22:46:01 MDT Print View

I would just check the local weather forecast and adjust for elevation. Its impossible to say exactly what you will encounter. Colorado is so varied. You'll do yourself a favor if you camp lower. I'm told you are more likely to get altitude sickness sleeping at a given elevation than being their during the day. So planning your campsites for lower elevations make sense.

Edit - I just remembered a couple things. First if you are coming from Buena Vista I'd be sure to do the Holy Cross Wilderness. That is if there isn't too much snow there. Its a pretty high area. If its clear there are a couple lakes toward the south end of the wilderness that you could camp by that are very nice. I think the first one near treeline is the best. It has great views of ridges to the south and north.
If snow is a concern you could start at the trailhead west of Turquise Lake. Also I was told there are a lot of bears in that area. I never saw one but bear baggins is a good idea.

Edited by Cameron on 05/05/2012 22:51:57 MDT.

Randy Nelson
(rlnunix) - F - M

Locale: Rockies
Temps on 05/08/2012 00:13:35 MDT Print View

A lot depends on how warm you sleep. Plan on temps going into the 20s at night. And winds are pretty common. Hopefully you can pin the Hexamid tight to reduce the exposure to wind. So if you are good to 20 degrees with your sleep system, you might be OK. Personally, I'd ditch the bug net and use that savings for some more insulation. Bugs shouldn't be an issue so early and you can always carry a superlight headnet.

No idea on the snow levels in that area right now but you should be prepared to walk in snow as snow in May is not unusual at all.