Thursday, September 11, 2008

CDT ST, day five.

Spinning up the dirt road from Jackson, Montana headed for Miner's Lake and the CDT, we came upon this:

After ruminating on it for about 6.2 seconds the thought that my mind settled on was simply this: a penis implant would likely have been cheaper, would certainly have used fewer trees, would not have degraded the view, and stood a better chance of making an (in)significant improvement to the owner's self confidence.

Harumph.

Fortunately we left the ranches and entered the forest pretty quick--the only structures up here are derelict cabins left over from miners and an occasional gate, and very few of either. Mostly we just saw a lotta mountains, rocks, trees, flowers, and lakes. And poop from large omnivorous critters.

You know--the good stuff.








The higher we climbed the better the trail seemed to get. Well built switchbacks connected long stretches of rideable if techy singletrack.






We were loving the trail almost as much as the scenery. Somewhere on our way north we'd crossed a threshold where the alpine lifezone dipped down into the 7000' range. Nearer to Lima we'd been at 10,000' and still in sage desert.








Simply couldn't stop composing and snapping pics this day. The light was just so-so but the amount and quality of subject material underfoot was staggering. I almost had several meltdowns when trying to decide which way to point the camera. At one point I was so overstim'ed I just plopped down on the ground, turned the camera off, and *looked*. Wanted to make sure I'd *seen* and *been* here instead of just photographing it. Made sure to take a few deep breaths to suck up the sweet stench of decaying organic matter too. Not much of that back home in the desert.






And then we crested a ridge and started downhill, with an immediate and unbelievable (to me, but then I'm easy to impress) increase in fun, chunk, tech, and scenery. In short, the trail got funner and the lookee-looing got better.


















Earlier than planned my tank hit "E" and after the requisite ~30 minutes of denial while attempting to clean a tech climb that required more than just abundant energy, I pulled over at a lakeside campsite and started collecting wood for a fire. The day had never warmed past ~60 and the incessant wind had me chilled before the sun fell beyond the nearest western ridge. Scott was in disbelief that I wanted to stop and I wasn't able to convince him (least I don't think I did) that the early halt wasn't a choice--I was simply cooked and had no more to give.

Banking some rest was the idea, but the wind had other plans for us...