Don’t carry it the whole time, ask someone at home to ship it out. The Continental Divide Trail Coalition (CDTC) is the 501 (c) (3) national non-profit working in partnership with the US Forest Service, National Park Service, and Bureau of Land Management to complete, promote and protect the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail. , Long-distance scenic trail in the western United States. Chinese Wall - This imposing monolith comes up out of nowhere and is one of the most photographed spots on the CDT. The notes and comments are not as plentiful and up to date as the PCT Guthook App, but they offer decent insights. Great Divide Basin - Love it or hate, most hikers won’t forget The Basin. The trail has a lot of beautiful sections with lots of trail bullshit between. It’s astounding. We had to be flexible with our schedule and hike fewer—or more—miles than we wanted based on the available campsites. (March 2008) "There & Back Again", Bastone, Kelly (August 2008) "Taking the High Way: Thru-hiking the Continental Divide Trail,", Bob Julyan, Tom Till, William Stone (2001), , "The Onion vs. Mr. Magoo - On your mark, get set ... hike. But after reading a book on hiking’s Triple Crown, his plans grew – by nearly 6,000 miles. There’s a lot of fear-mongering about the water situation on the Continental Divide Trail. The route you choose route is up to you. Trail towns are a little fewer and further apart on the CDT. By Paul Ingram (aka "Pie"): Pie is a British thru-hiker living in Finland. One of the coolest things about the Continental Divide Trail is the variety of ecosystems and scenery you pass through. It's almost impossible to tell when you will arrive and so walk-up permits are your best option. German long-distance rider Günter Wamser (on his way from Tierra del Fuego to Alaska), and Austrian Sonja Endlweber (who joined him for the rest of the journey from Mexico) managed to complete the tour with four Bureau of Land Management mustangs in three summers 2007–09. Prepare to night-hike. Depending on any given year's snow-pack and a hiker's individual schedule, alternative routes are available. However, oftentimes, you would have to go to the Post Office (a hassle). There is no purism on the CDT. In most areas the trail is well marked. A few stretches of the CDT in Colorado have no distinct marked or named trail, but Jonathan Ley's or Jim Wolf's maps are helpful. The gear used on most long-distance hikes is about the same but here are a few things that are specific to the CDT. Affiliate disclosure: We aim to provide honest information to our readers. On May 4, Williams started walking north along the Continental Divide Trail (CDT), in Lordsburg, New Mexico, about 100 miles north of the Mexican border. Located 3 miles from the International Port of Entry at Palomas, Mexico, Columbus is a small border village with several amenities including two modest hotels, a gas station, a handful of small cafes, a US Post Office, a bank, auto mechanics, and grocery stores. Southern terminus - most people hike from the official southern terminus at crazy cook. Gila River - This unique section of the CDT is actually an alternate but you should definitely do it. THE CONTINENTAL DIVIDE TRAIL The Continental Divide of the Americas, also known as the Great Divide, is a hydrological divide that separates the watersheds that drain into either the … They must also reach the end of the trail up in Glacier National Park before winter storms set in. This post may contain affiliate links. Resupply logistics of a thru-hike are also a little more complicated. We did find it quite difficult to organize permits for Glacier National Park and Yellowstone, but we were traveling in quite a large group. We hiked it in 2017 and it was one of the most memorable parts of my thru-hike. Here are the main ones. The Continental Divide Trail (CDT) spans over 3,100 miles from Mexico to Canada and is one of the most significant trail systems in the world. Because of the incomplete nature of the Continental Divide Trail, the route is somewhat open to interpretation. And, luckily, the CDT hits some cool spots that most tourists don’t go to. An avid outsoorswoman, West Point graduate and former Captain in the U.S. Army, Jennifer Hanson - with her husband Greg Allen - set off to thru-hike the 2,400-mile Continenta Northern Terminus - Both of these are official start and end points. The nearest major city is Missoula Montana with regular buses running to East Glacier and Browning. Keep your eye out for cool alternates, there's a lot. He completed the AT in 2015 and the CDT in 2017.About Greenbelly: After thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail, Chris Cage created Greenbelly to provide fast, filling and balanced meals to backpackers. This makes the whole experience on the CDT a much more lonesome and solitary experience compared with the Pacific Crest Trail or the Appalachian Trail. Grays Peak - The highest point on the CDT at 14,278 ft. Getting to the top of this peak gives a great sense of achievement and once you’ve caught you breathe, you can drink in the epic views. The journey from Lordsburg to the terminus is a rough and rugged one with a four-wheel vehicle required. It is brought to you by The Continental Divide Trail Coalition, Atlas Guides, and Sawyer. The Continental Divide Trail Coalition (CDTC) has released an updated statement with guidance for hiking along the CDT this year. Approximately 110 miles (177 km) of the CDT traverses Glacier National Park.  From Columbus, the route is a roadwalk to Lordsburg. Resupplying is also much easier with the Gila River alternate as you walk past Doc Campbells store. Continental Divide Trail Culture. If you're unsure, take the official route but these alternates are well worthwhile. Lastly, you'll have to take normal precautions against rattlesnakes and other wildlife. Hikers must decide on a route with regard to the Great Divide Basin since the actual Continental Divide forks in southern Wyoming, forming an endorheic basin. I never had any real problems but some of the towns on the Continental Divide Trail are poor rural towns. Whether headed Northbound or southbound, snow is the major deciding factor in planning your departure time. You’ll also have to carry up to 6 days of food on the CDT. The shuttle is provided for a fee for northbounders between March 1 and May 15, and on-demand for southbounders finishing in the fall. We did it and I highly recommend it. Some are necessary to go around impassable areas. Additional notable features in Wyoming include: Northbounders leaving Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming enter the Centennial Mountains of Idaho. The trail is a combination of dedicated trails and small roads and considered 70% complete. But do you really want to skip that much mileage? At 2,800 miles (4,500km) in length (give or take, there’s actually some debate here), the Continental Divide Trail (CDT, for short) is often considered the most challenging of the “Triple Crown” of long distance hiking trails in the united States. These two alternates will add in difficult mileage but reward you with epic views. Thru-hiking the CDT is an adventure of a lifetime, but it’s not for the faint of heart. One slight advantage of Heading Northbound is that you will be starting in the relatively easy, flat, rolling terrain of New Mexico. M. Biggers, Ashley. They can be obtained easily via walk-up. The CDT pushed me harder than I knew I could be. The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail is a 3,100-mile (4,989-kilometer) hiking trail that passes from the border of Mexico to Canada through the Rocky Mountains.  Local volunteer groups place water caches (usually a pile of plastic gallon jugs) at strategic points along the trail. The Continental Divide Trail is the least visited of the three Triple Crown trails in the US. Microspikes: Used for traction in the snow and is a good idea when icy conditions are probable. The winds have the power to simultaneously make you feel really tiny whilst making you feel glad to be alive. Additional notable points on the CDT in Montana include: The Montana Wilderness Association is the leading non-profit partner for the northern section of Continental Divide Trail. However, when it comes to hiking in lightning-prone areas, most problems can be avoided by planning ahead, staying alert to changing weather conditions, Read More … There are some stretches with few water sources which means you'll have to carry plenty of water. You need to be prepared for all kinds of weather on the Continental divide trail. Abundant wildlife, rugged terrain in the remote Bob Marshall Wilderness, and Montana deserves its title of big sky country. Don’t worry and don’t plan too much though. Wyoming on the CDT is a mixture of classic National Parks and open range with little water and rolling terrain. Don't forget them! Northbound Hikers leave Wyoming in West Yellowstone and start following the Idaho/Montana boundary. If you start in Glacier National Park heading south, the terrain is mountainous and hiking is difficult. You’ll likely spot some cowboys on the horizon. Alternate routes play a huge part in the CDT.  Tapon took the most circuitous, scenic, high, difficult route north and while returning south, took the more expedient route. Its entire length traverses the Great Divide through five states, namely Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado and New Mexico. There are arrowheads to study and ancient cave dwellings to visit along the trail. Dave Odell thru-hiked in 1977 and in the same year Dan Torpey hiked from the NM/CO border to Mt Robson, B.C. Overall mileage can vary from 2600 up to 3100 miles. Hiking the Continental Divide Trail: One Woman's Journey eBook: Hanson, Jennifer: Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store The CDT is a geologist’s dream. Packing myself boxes and having a friend send them to me on the trail had positives and negatives. To most regular folks, traveling that sort of distance on foot with your possessions on your back sounds like a form of torture. Get ready for the hardest and least fun trail. Waterton lake has you going into Canada but is often closed for Northbounders due to fires. More information here. The trail is most commonly hiked from South to North starting at the Mexican border. The Continental Divide Trail (CDT) March 6, 2020 by SweetPea After a crazy busy and often stressful winter, we are ready to feel the trail under our feet, gaze at a night sky full of stars, and see some new parts of the US by foot again. Hikers are often forced to take the Creede Cutoff to skip heavy snow and potentially dangerous conditions in the San Juan's. Avoid the crowded spots by passing through very early or once everyone’s gone home. Notable points on the CDT in New Mexico include: The CDT passes through many of the highest and wildest mountain regions of Colorado, such as the San Juan Mountains in southern Colorado and the Sawatch Range in the central region. From the Crazy Cook Monument (the official southern terminus), the trail begins as a cross-country desire path; the official route up to Lordsburg will be surveyed based around this path at a future date. Only about two hundred people a year attempt to hike the entire trail, taking about six months to complete it. There are a few different alternates that can be taken on the trail although there is a generally accepted official route. On my hike of the Continental Divide Trail, I saw a grizzly bear, black bears, moose, coyote, small mammals, and a lone wolf in the single coolest wildlife interaction I’ve ever had. You feel like you’re walking through a western movie with towering sandstone cliffs all around. All these major cities offer connecting flights around the US or further afield. The Crazy Cook Monument is the most commonly recognized starting or finishing point of the Continental Divide Trail, but due to its remote location, devoid of any lodging or other services, Columbus is considered a legitimate alternate starting or finishing point for those hiking or biking the CDT. Undeterred by injuries that would cripple most men, a Colorado hiker nears the halfway point in a pioneering attempt to thru-hike the true crest of the Continental Divide. Step 3) Click on the three white vertical dots and then "Print Map" from that drop down menu. NOTABLE AREAS / HIGHLIGHTS:Lemhi pass - The highest point that the Lewis and Clark expedition went through. It also passes through much more remote and rugged terrain than the other two trails. Soak in hot springs and try not to smile. Hiking the Continental Divide Trail: One Woman's Journey is the story of their incredible summer and is filled with courage, humor, stunning scenery, local personalities and the simple joys of backpacking. A Kalispell woman spent the past five months largely avoiding the pandemic and politics by hiking the Continental Divide Trail from Mexico to Canada.  The shuttle costs 120 dollars per person. Get yourself a slice! Similar to the Pacific Crest Trail, the CDT towns are fairly far apart. More information can be found here. Gila River Wilderness - The official route through the Black Mountains Is meant to be quite beautiful. Foreword by Steve Dudley, Executive Director of the Continental Divide Trail Alliance. With the amount of distance you will be covering, its important to try and keep your base weight low. The Continental Divide Trail (CDT) is a long-distance trail that runs from the Canadian border to the Mexican border. I wish the CDT spent more time in them. The CDT, alongside the Appalachian Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail make up the triple crown of hiking. In this extended online interview, Dunmire talks about his gear essentials, near misses, and the challenges that lay ahead as he continues to trace North America's spine. Continental Divide Trail Water Report The CDT Water Report is a data set that is kept up-to-date by hikers and for hikers to help all hikers find reliable and trustworthy water sources. Water containers: There are some long stretches where you need to carry a good amount of water with you. A lot of the CDT is road walking or hiking on other trails that use a different blazing system. For much of this hike you walk along the Continental Divide, so you have panoramic views across the park. Of all the five states traversed by the CDT, Wyoming has the most diverse terrain. Otherwise, the official route takes you on the Butte Circle which does a weird unnecessary loop around the town of Butte.  Andrew Skurka completed the trail as part of the 6,875-mile Great Western Loop in 2007. Rarely do you walk right through them as you do on the AT. Northbounders finish their hikes with a bang in Glacier National Park. Of course, if you are looking for a social hike, the CDT isn't really the trail. That means plenty of thunderstorms. Anaconda Cut-off - This alternate skips about 90 miles and has you walking directly through the cool town of Anaconda. They do exist but many are gross, to say the least. Northbounders will usually start towards the end of April so as to not arrive too early in the San Juan mountains and deal with heavy snow. This comes at no extra cost to you. The major difference is when people start. They cost 35 USD and are available here. The three nearest major cities are El Paso, TX, Phoenix, AZ, and Albuquerque, NM. From Crazy Creek Monument and the border of Mexico to Cumbres Pass/Chama. The Guthook app allowed us to easily follow a GPS track should the trail be hard to find or nonexistent. Glacier National Park - One of the gems of the Continental Divide Trail. This post is my advice for future Continental Divide Trail hikers. Many local people in towns haven't even heard of the CDT. The trail passes through five states - New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho and Montana - and ends at the Canadian border in Glacier National Park. Additionally, there are a few areas that require permits for overnight camping such as Glacier National Park and Yellowstone. That's considerable compared to the Appalachian Trail where you often walk into town or the trail is very nearby. Only about two hundred people a year attempt to hike the entire trail, taking about six months to complete it. It left me with a profound feeling of awe … They may also face snow in Colorado in the San Juan Mountains, so they need to arrive there in September. 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