June 22nd
Piney Creek(1053.4)-Just After Inter w/Wheeler Tr(1077.3)
Campsite Elevation: 11,317ft
We woke up this morning knowing we were 21mi from Copper Mtn. I thought it was just a closed for the summer ski resort just like many others we have passed. Halfway through the morning, I found out that it was a touristy area that was open and would definitely have a burger and milkshake. I was motivated! Mtn Rat left early with the goal of getting more miles in, so we didn’t hike with him today. It was me, LoveNote, Rockin’, Silly Chili, Drop-N-Roll, and Stryder. We started off with more forested level and downhill hiking early in the morning. Then we had a 1,500ft climb that went over two passes(Kokomo and Searle) at just over 12,000ft. They had great views and I wanted to take them in because I don’t know how much longer we’ll be seeing views like these. There was even a husband and wife named Julie and Phil doing some trail maintenance, which was great to see! Thank you to all the trail crew volunteers!

We had lunch at the top of Searle Pass and it was a great view! I couldn’t resist getting on a perfect rock for a Wired pose.

Since I have been really hungry lately, I decided I’d splurge on the burger and milkshake at Copper Mtn. That meant that I had an extra dinner and I got to eat a Mountain House from my friend Heart for lunch. What a treat! Love the photo bomb from Drop-n-Roll.

The next 8mi down to Copper after lunch flew by as it was downhill and I could even jog some of it with a practically empty pack. It was also a Saturday and popular mountain bike trail, so that was a first and kinda annoying. Drop-N-Roll and I got there by 3:30pm and everyone trickled down over the next hour or more. We ate and lounged with our shoes off. It was so odd to be in civilization right along the trail like that.

I could sense the motivation to continue hiking waning. I was really feeling good and wanted to at least get halfway up the big 2,600ft climb in front of us. Since everyone was dragging their feet I just hiked on knowing the inevitable decision would be that they would just camp at the bottom of the climb. I ended up hiking another 1,300ft and a couple miles and it felt good as I was feeling energized. I ended up camping halfway up the hill with a nice young couple doing the Colorado Trail. I’ve mentioned that the CT overlaps with the CDT for about 234mi and that it is about 500mi long I think. Most do the CT southbound and some fire closures lifted recently, so we have seen more and more CTers each day. Anyone who knows Mama Bear and Monkey from PCT 2012 (Monkey became the youngest to thru hike the PCT at 9yrs old), they have started the CT. They are coming towards me and we hope to overlap the day I come out of Breckenridge on Tuesday. It will be fun to see them again if it works out. If you are interested, their CT blog (and former PCT blog is http://sierrapct.blogspot.com
A random note thar I am super pumped and just have to say it because I have had lots of service lately after weeks with almost nothing. For the first time in like a month I am able to watch a show in my tent! I’m going to watch an episode of Modern Family once I post this. Tomorrow is a nero and overnight in Breckenridge. I’m about 10mi from town. I am caught up on my correspondence and blogging, so I am excited for some Hulu time and major show watching tomorrow. So excited to relax!

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