We are truly excited to be getting out in a brand new mountain range hiking this summer! Neither of us have done any backpacking in Colorado and look forward to a new experience in the Rockies.
The Colorado Trail, or CT, is a trail extending from Denver to Durango. It is entirely within Colorado, and unlike many of the long distance trails, it does not start at a border.
Some Colorado Trail Facts:
- A thru-hike of the trail is typically 485 miles
- The highest point on the Colorado Trail is 13,271 feet
- Average elevation of the trail is over 10,000 feet
- Total elevation gain is 89,000 feet
- The CT is a fairly new trail, fully completed in 1987
- Concurrent with the Continental Divide Trail for 235 miles
We expect to see plenty of other hikers, as well as mountain bikers, and horse riders as well. The CT is one of the few long trails that has all 3 activities co-existing for a large part of the trail. From what we have been told, the CT is one of the most well-marked and maintained long distance trails in the US. Without a desert to walk through and plenty of snow this past winter, the CT has plentiful water, with only a couple dry stretches over 10 miles.
With a planned start date of June 30th, we are at the front end of the season. This year has been a high snow year for Colorado and as we write our ‘pre-trail’ posts for the site, certain sections are currently deemed impassible. Luckily, snow is melting quickly, and we expect to be able to cross those sections by the time we reach them.
On this hike, we have 5 town stops, and an average food carry of just over 80 miles. We plan to average slightly over 20 miles per day on the hike. Depending on thunderstorms that may interrupt our afternoons (quite common) and snow depth, our plans could change. We may also be underestimating the difficulty of the trail as well, we will soon see 🙂
From what we can tell, the CT is a very popular trail. We have recently been joining the FaceBook Groups for the trails that we hope to hike, and the Colorado Trail Class of 2017 FB group is quite active.
We has been making our spreadsheets for the trails over the years and this year Beardoh made an App which grabs data from those spreadsheets and will work on both iPhone and Android. The App basically displays all of the info that we need from our spreadsheets reminding us what choices we had made prior to starting the trail – avg miles per day for a given section, info on lodging, internet, fuel, and a bunch of other stuff that we believe will be helpful.