[Cdt-l] big sky variant
briansolar1 at yahoo.co.uk
Tue Nov 11 14:19:25 CST 2014
I couldn't resist replying to Mathew's post below...
A few years ago after our 2009 hike I posted some maps on the 'big sky variant' which is not on the divide but provides a shorter hiking connection between the CDT at '2 ocean pass' in northern Wyoming to near Butte southern Montana. The maps are here at: http://wildernesstravels.co.uk/cdt/bigsky.htm.
Others had been this way before including Jim and Ginny Owen - and 'the Onion' had already created maps for the northern section. We enjoyed the hike, it covers interesting territory, but is definitely not the continental divide.
>> I opted for the Big sky variant and regretted every
>> moment of it leading to the point of bailing out in Big Sky
>> MT. A complete mental collapse around it. Not to
>> mention funding. Somebody should take this out as an option.
I am sorry you had such a bad time Mathew, but I happen to like options, it is up to you to pick the ones suitable to your own abilities and preferences - or hike your own route altogether. What my maps do in a small way, along with say Jonathan Ley's purple line routes and the many great alternates described by Jim Wolf's guides is give you some choices, the CDT official route is always there if you choose that!
Black Isle Scotland
Date: Sun, 9 Nov 2014 16:36:21 -0800
From: matthew lesniewicz <mlesswicz at yahoo.com>
Subject: [Cdt-l] Location name / lowly- start date
To: "cdt-l at backcountry.net"
<cdt-l at backcountry.net>
<1415579781.48279.YahooMailNeo at web122002.mail.ne1.yahoo.com>
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I 'm guessing the campground was Lagunitas. I don't remember
a private ranch per say but it is surrounded by the Tierra
Amarilla on the west. That's what keeps us off the divide
leaving north of Chama. Chama and Banded Pks. Those first
two defining mountains in the south san juan.
I'm in the same boat in regards to being a "lowly section
hiker." And also wondering about an ideal start date ID/MT.
It's one thing when one plans a thru and finds themselves
demoted to a section hiker Vs. a conscious choice of
only hiking sections.
There's something less fulfilling about it, if your not
fulfilling your intentions.
That's where I'm at from this 2014 season hike. A measly
2000 miles and I feel like a failure. Completely short
handed. I know that's my own problem. I'll confess, even
worse I opted for the Big sky variant and regretted every
moment of it leading to the point of bailing out in Big Sky
MT. A complete mental collapse around it. Not to
mention funding. Somebody should take this out as an option.
And save it for the yo yo's to whom it was created for. It
is completely more directionally sound however, but way off
the divide theme.
Now I'm stuck with 550 miles from there or going back to
southern yellowstone and finishing the official some
Even if I would have finished the variant I wouldn't have
felt like I hiked the CDT. Not meeting the demand of
Most will say it doesn't matter what routes you take on the
cdt but I would ask are you hiking the CDT? Can you hack the
Weminuche or climb the highest on the divide. Or hike the
basin in the hottest time of the season. Short cutting,
flipping blah blah. I think once you start doing this, one
tends to loose their "thru" hiking status. And is transposed
to a chunker. I know this topic will get heated and the
debate will go on and on and peoples' feelings will get
hurt. And everybody will get defensive.
Thru the seasons and thru the land, over the trail, to the
border we go!
(Disclaimer): these are my feelings and interpretations.
And really none of it matters. I'm just glad to see and meet
everyone out there. It was a great class of 2014.
I'm just trying to come out of my shell with all this.
The CDT is an epic awesome passage. I'm so enthralled that
it exists for us..........
We do what we can and make the most of it.
And the irony is, in reality hiking sections probably would
be the most enjoyable. Bravo to the section hikers that
Anyone with PTS (post trail syndrome) out there?
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