Daily Miles: 18
2021 CDT Total Miles: 184
Overall CDT Total Miles: 2254
When we were in Butte, Mace bought some different food for this next stretch of the trail. The thought of all the food he had originally bought made him nauseous, so he walked the aisles of Safeway to see what looked good. He picked up a bag of Dot’s Pretzels which have now become his favorite food, and probably his reason for getting up in the morning. :). Sadly he knew the pretzels wouldn’t last through the day, so he dubbed today as Dot’s Last Dance. Needless to say, he’ll be seeking them out when we get into Helena.
Today was another really lovely day. Cool morning temperatures with blue skies. There has been some smoke in the air the past two days, but it really seemed to drift away as the day went on.
The trail was quite nice today, often going from forest to meadow and back and forth. We had nice views around us whenever we went through a meadow. It looked like there had been recent maintenance with downed trees cut away from the trail.
We only had two water sources today and both were small trickles. That meant that there was no laundry today. It has felt like we have been carrying a lot of water for the past five days or so. We have the capacity to carry four liters and we are often maxed out. With the cooler temps, we might not need to carry so much, but we have read that water continues to be scarce for another hundred miles or so.
This afternoon we ran into the section hiker we had met on Day 4. We had more time to talk with her today and learned that her trail name is SweetPerm. This summer, she hiked from Steamboat Springs, CO to Leadore, ID when she came to the trail closure. Then she decided to hike a loop around Butte, connecting the regular CDT and the Anaconda Cutoff.
We came to the junction for the Anaconda Cutoff near the end of our day. We had a climb at the end of the day and found a good tent site for Mace right at the top. The forest is pretty much all young trees, so we are hanging on smaller trees than we normally do.
It took us awhile to find a descent bearhang tonight. We walked around until we found a dead tree that was leaning on another tree. It is about 200+ yards or more from camp, but luckily with our hot pink bags we can see them from camp. Tomorrow morning it will probably be Mace’s very reflective rope which will get us back to the bags.