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Continental divide trail
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Michael Byrne

Locale: Raleigh NC
Continental divide trail on 07/07/2013 20:01:26 MDT Print View

I am planning a weeklong backpacking trip mid-August to the CDT and would like some views and comments. Most of my backpacking has been in the Appalachians and White Mountains, so I expect the Rockies to be more challenging.
I plan to do an "out and back" starting at the Hessie Trailhead, hiking into the CDT and traveling south to James Peak or beyond depending on the schedule.
Does anyone know of a weekday shuttle to Hessie since I'll be using public transport.
What do you think of the distance - it's short on miles; 12-15 miles per day is normal in the Appalachians
Are there good escape routes off the divide to avoid thunder storms?

Paul Magnanti
(PaulMags) - MLife

Locale: People's Republic of Boulder
Transportation to Hessie on 07/07/2013 20:24:38 MDT Print View

There is no public transit from Nederland to the Hessie TH during the week unfortunately. (Weekends is another story

However, the RTD system does go into Nederland. From there, it is a fairly easy hitch out of town to Hessie. You won't be the only one to his this TH, even during the week.

As for the mileage schedule, 10-15 MPD is doable for most people. However, do you plan on acclimating a bit before going to 11k+ ft? The elevation could have an impact on your schedule.

You will be above treeline for most of the trip, buy a good map does show the side trails to bail into the trees / lower if need be.

Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Continental divide trail on 07/08/2013 07:31:27 MDT Print View

My blog has a couple of trip reports along the route you'll be travelling:

Indian Peaks Southern Loop

James Peak Wilderness Loop

Mileage is such an individual matter that I won't venture a guess as to what you're likely to do. But I doubt you'll get bored. There's a lot of beauty in there. If you find yourself ahead of schedule, just do the James Peak Loop and head back on the divide, maybe taking the King Lake trail back to start. Generally, stay up on the divide in the mornings and duck into the side drainages when thunderstorms threaten later in the day.

Get ahold of the Trails Illustrated maps #102 and #103 and you'll be able to plan a great trip.

Michael Byrne

Locale: Raleigh NC
Great information - thanks on 07/09/2013 07:24:23 MDT Print View

Appreciate the information about the transport to Hessie and the links. Dondo, your blog is excellent - wonderful photographs, can't wait to get there in August.