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The Colorado Trail

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    • The Colorado Trail

      I am thinking about hiking the Colorado trail with my son in law starting around July 20th. Anyone with experience @PaulMags that has any advise on gear for this trail compared to hiking the AT would be helpful. I'm thinking it should take 4 weeks or possibly 5 depending on my partner.
      Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory.
      Dr. Seuss Cof123
    • You should be aware that they have very dry conditions out there this year and a large section of the trail has already been closed. From The Colorado Trail Association...

      TRAIL TIP TUESDAY…CONDITIONS RECAP JUNE 12, 2018 on The Colorado Trail. (There’s real danger. Please ‘share’ and spread the word.) Sorry to report all of this; we know it severely messes up the plans many of you have.
      CLOSED ARE SEGS 24-28 – Due to wildfires near Durango and the extreme fire danger, authorities have closed CT Segments 24-28, Stony Pass to Durango. In fact, the entire San Juan National Forest has been closed.
      VERY SMOKY SEGS 21-23 – Though smoke is variable, reports indicate you should expect very smoky air in CT Segments 21-23, maybe more we can’t know for sure. These CT segments are downwind and not too far from the huge wildfires near Durango.
      DURATION OF CLOSURES AND SMOKE – While duration is unknowable with any precision, expect the above closures and smoky conditions to continue for a few weeks at minimum, say through the entire month of June at a minimum, and possibly into July and even beyond.
      ALTERNATE CT PLAN – How this all affects each CT user is up to each CT user. One strategy suggested makes good sense: begin your SOBO CT trip and, if these fire things remain, at the south end of the loop turn back NOBO and hike the entire Collegiate Loop. After that, if you're still wanting similar miles to the entire CT, keep going NOBO and finish at either Waterton or one of the other two alternatives. When you're able, and when conditions are better, return to travel the south half of the CT. Different strategies would be to continue traveling south, hoping it doesn’t turn too smoky, and diverging at, say, San Luis Pass/Creede (thru Seg 20) or, say, Stony Pass/Silverton having completed through Segment 23 (stopping at the Segment 24 closure).
      WATERTON CANYON CLOSURES – Canyon and all Waterton parking is closed Jun 11-15 but opens Saturday, June 16.
      FIRE BANS – The entire Colorado Trail is subject to fire bans that amount to the following: Camp fires are prohibited. Smoking is prohibited. Almost all types of backpacker stoves are prohibited, though still allowed are pressurized canister stoves.
      SNOWPACK – Snowpack passable are Segments 1-5, 10-14, 16-23, CW01, CW03-CW05. By June 20 (maybe before) we think the balance will also become passable.
      STAY TUNED – Additional wildfires could break out at any time as well as additional closures and smoke, so please check back here regularly and often to ensure you're up to date with conditions. Be safe out there and enjoy The Colorado Trail.
      PLEASE SHARE AND SPREAD THE WORD. Photos thanks to Durango Herald and Scripps.
      “Of all sad words of tongue or pen,
      the saddest are these, 'It might have been.”

      John Greenleaf Whittier