[Cdt-l] Water Crossing

Doris Wolford prairiesky at yahoo.com
Thu Dec 17 10:46:19 CST 2009

Okay, the joke is on me.  I'd never hike in "flip-flops"... I wear
boots.  I live in boots (cowboy boots, construction boots, hiking
boots), otherwise moccassins or barefoot.  I like boots.  Ask Merrell -- they probably remember my name
since I write to them all the time and give them feedback.  I've worn
boots in 4' of water doing wetland delineations ... there was no bank
and the phragmites and brush prohibited an accurate delineation from
the bank.  Merrell's boots make my ankles feel great and they make
boots/shoes that fit my women's size 5 feet and I can wear them for
tens of miles without serious foot wear -- I'll use what I trust.  I
like their antimicrobial material (and I've never had a pair of their
brand going septic like I've had other boots do after walking in
muck).  I like the ankle support... not from weak ankles... but I like
the idea of not tearing another tendon.  So, I'll be wearing boots and
I'll probably cross the waters in my boots or a Merrill shoe or fishing
shoes -- and go barefoot in gentle gravel where I can see the bottom --
although I like the sock and liner idea.  I live barefoot around the
house and even go out barefoot in the winter for short periods.   I
love my feet and I'll need them every step I take.

Flipflop the trail as it goes is what I meant originally -- not
flipflop footwear or flip-flop shoes.  UGH! I don't know how anyone could do that!  So, truthfully, I'm not
worried about losing my "flip-flops".  Truth is, I've never called them
that, so I guess I got a little off the beaten path with this
conversation.  A native western Nebraskan, I've learned that we folks
from the Sandhills seem to have a little bit of a different use of some
words.  This has been a fun chat, though.  What you have been calling
"flip-flops", I call "thongs"... but I guess mostly these days,
"thongs" would make most people think of underwear... at least my
daughter would see it that way!  

Regardless, I truly would like to be in Montana to see the Indian
Paintbrush bloom.  You see, my passion is plants.  My profession has been preservation/mitigation of forests, prairies, fens, wetlands... but I've never seen Indian Paintbrush in bloom.  They don't grow in Nebraska and I've never seen any
here in Michigan.  What I'd really love to do is document the flora
along the CDT -- where there are spectacular displays of certain

So I need to understand the water crossings.  I do some fly fishing up here, but the areas I ford are not worriesome, really.  A little rocky in areas, but that is alright, cuz I have my BOOTS on! :)
Hmmm... so maybe I can truly do the sobo trip?  That would be a treasure!  Looking to do either 2011 or 2012.  I'm flexible (better prepared than not).  You all are so inspiring, though!  THANKS! 

From: "cicelyb250 at aol.com" <cicelyb250 at aol.com>
To: prairiesky at yahoo.com
Cc: cdt-l at backcountry.net
Sent: Thu, December 17, 2009 9:52:01 AM
Subject: Re: [Cdt-l] finding a function's definition from a call - water crossings

I'm 5ft 6 inches and 60 -61 when I did the CDT in 2008-2009.  For the 
Gila, I wore sturdy tennis shoes and kept them on all day since I was 
crossing the river constantly.   Heavy, but safe.  I noticed many 
hikers used crocs for the water.  When I finished in 2009 (Lincoln, 
Montana to Canada) I used crocs.  They worked like a charm.  Hiked a 
bit in them in parts of the Bob Marshall where there were river crossings within 
several hundred yards.  Normally I hike in hiking boots since my feet and 
ankles are crappy.  Many, many hikers use some sort of trail shoe and 
keep them on for rivers and trail.  Of course Billy Goat is famous for 
crossing rivers by wearing socks lined by his liners.  If it's a nice sandy 
river bottom bare feet are ok too.
I am a fisherman and learned early on that when the water is swift - turn 
and face the current.  Shuffle sideways across the water.  Feels and 
sounds strange, but you are less likely to be swept off your feet.  With 
two poles and two feet, keep 3 planted while you move the fourth.  Slow, 
but safe for this timid old hiker.  Take your time and "read" the 
river.  What looks like a good crossing may or may not be. 
Maybe I just hit it right, but I found fewer scary crossings on the CDT 
than I did on the PCT.  In hiking season, most rivers in Glacier have nice 
suspension bridges across them!

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