Sunday, June 14, 2015

San Juan's part 2

Hahaha, the San Juan Mountains....
The day started off well enough. There were some pretty dicey slope crossings, one of the few times I would have liked an ice axe. Then there was another really scary descent - since there was no visible trail and lots of snow there were no other choices. We eventually were able to dry out our gear, it's called a hiker yard sale. It was a good thing too because the day got better.
We started off climbing up to a pass/saddle, and after that we followed the ridge back up and around some peaks. We pretty much stayed right at 12,500 feet. We were surround by remnants of old avalanches, it would be pretty spooky to be around here when those were triggered. In the valley and mountains that we came from, thunderstorms were forming and getting nasty.  As soon as we got to the top and rounded the next mountain, a thunderstorm hit us from our left side. Lightning flashed all around us and there was nowhere to hide. We trudged on but instead of rain we were blessed with pea sized hail and a steady head wind.  From there the trail became even more exposed and the hail turned to rain. We pushed on... For about 20 min. We reached a cliff and realized a we might be in a pretty bad situation. Reststop and I were shaking pretty bad, I'm not sure about Atlas and and Hard time but as a group we decided to set up our tents and get warm. It was good timing too because things got really cold really quick. That was at 2 pm, since then it's dropped 40 degrees to around 30 and now it's snowing/sleeting on us. My tent is not made for this weather, there are icicles forming sound the edges and pools of slush forming on the bottom of the valley near the footbox. Now it's 4 pm and I don't think we're going anywhere.
Tomorrow will be day 4 and we are all starting to wonder if we have enough food. I brought 2 extra dinners and just had one for lunch.
I'm not a big fan of the slogan "embrace the brutality" by a guy named D-Low and in all of Yogi's books. In the desert, low on water, I would ponder it. Now I completely understand, this is the real deal. The CDT is not for the faint of heart or weak minded. It is snowing again...

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