|Getting back on w/ Addie|
Our Lander host, Alice Brew, dropped off Sara and our friend Addie and me at the trail head after it seemed I had recovered. We made decent time and thought all was great as we passed the spot where we had to turn around two weeks earlier. As we entered the trees (finally, trees!) and started to climb, however, my heart rate shot up. The slightest incline shot it over 140. We managed the rest of the day and after passing signs to watch for grizzlies tearing apart a previously buried carcass we camped in a beautiful meadow.
|Beaver dam flooded this bridge|
The next day we had lunch on a lake at the base of Temple and East Temple mountains before heading over the pass to Temple Lake. Here, we saw the remnants of a glacier; a stark reminder that our world is changing. The valley down to Big Sandy lake was gorgeous. East Temple Peak provided a 2,000' backdrop as we lake hopped down the sheer glacial valley. It took us all day to do 8 miles since we frequently stopped to allow my heart rate to drop back below 100. It was not a bad place to need to stop though. We could spend weeks in that valley.
After driving back through the smoke-hazy Tetons, we took a few days to get back to Flagstaff and managed to see one of my old friends in the Rifle, CO area (Ryan Glassman) before staying with one of Addie's friends in Aspen. We then drove over Independence Pass, had an awesome lunch in Salida (totally recommend the bakery/deli there) and camped just south of Durango. Watching the mountains fly by as we traveled south through Colorado was depressing. We spent a long time trying to get north through there and it was all undone in a few hours.
|There should be a glacier, instead it is a snowfield.|
As we pulled into Flagstaff, both of us really just wanted to turn around and head back north. Mentally, neither of us are prepared or capable of being home right now. It was such an abrupt end to our journey for this year that it is hard to comprehend that last week we were still heading north, on foot. We saw a few friends in town, but that was about all we can handle. As soon as we know what is wrong with me we are getting out of town to try and figure out how to re-enter society. We are hoping a road trip up to see Sara's sister in Bend, OR
At this point we would like to thank everyone who supported and followed us through the hike this year. It would have been much more difficult without the help of our friends and families. We are going to keep occasionally updating the blog with our adventures and will definitely resume the blog with part 2 of our hike July 1, next year.
-Track and Field