View Full Version : Hiking on the CT vs the A.T.
I just moved here to Denver and am wondering exactly what gear is essential for me to have if i am gonna hike on the CT? Especially this close to Fall. I sold the hammock and am getting a tent for starters. :-?
Go dayhike some of the 12-14ers and get a look see.
Also, what seasons are you going to hike?
I used a tarp on the CT FWIW.
You can use the same gear on the CT that you used on the AT with some caveats.
From my CT guide:
If you are an AT or another long trail veteran, most of your equipment and clothing choices should work fine. There are some caveats that do apply:
· You are hiking at altitude! UV radiation is more intense; sun exposure is a major concern. Sunglasses and sun protection are a must! Wear sunscreen and/or a large hat, long sleeves and long pants. Even the dime store sunglasses now have 100% UVA and UVB protection.
· You will want to be hydrated as well. The sun exposure means you are more likely to get dehydrated. A dehydrated body does not work efficiently. Drink!
· If you are hammock camper, you will have to be more careful in picking you campsites. Much of the CT is above tree line; so less options.
· If you use canisters for fuel, be aware there are less gear stores than on the AT. You will have to mail canisters by surface mail and mark accordingly. Whiteblaze.net has an excellent FAQ on fuel canisters, including how to mail them:
· White gas and Heet/denatured alcohol are found fairly easily in most re-supply areas
I will say it is BARELY summer in the high country. Most of the snow just melted (or is melting). It will be Fall ~late August. The wildflowers are now coming out and are awesome. From Rocky Mtn national park last weekend:
If you want to take a trek to Boulder, give me a holler. I'm always doing some local hike. Some hard, some at a " social pace"
I did'nt change anything for the CT. All the gear worked out fine. it sounds like you are looking fora fall hike... July can be STORMY,, haha. I found cannisters along the trail. i only cook 1 meal though... so I only used 3 or so. the terrian is different, obviously,,, but parts are stunning.
I am not looking to do more than an overnighter right now. Will be going with a blind guy and a newb. :) hehe So we will be lilligagging o say the least. Should be good times and good stories! :) I'm going back to a tent set-up b/c o the treeline situation and the newb doesnt know if she likes hiking in actuality as much as theoretically. That being said...where would you suggest an overnight maybe 5 mile hike in 5 back out hike? I love being near water or at least having a nice view. near camp. I don't mind out of the way places nor do I mind places ppl flock too and having to hike a little farther to camp away from them.
I want to do pikes peak but, I dunno how well that would go over having just moved here. My newb recruit is all ready and I just se it as disasterous. thought about making it an overnight hike camping at the cabin/lodge place half way up?
OH and Mags, I LOVE the igloo!!! HELLO! I HAVE to get in on some igloo action! :p
Do the Chicago Lakes.
Near Denver, five miles, alpine lakes, wildflowers and nice scenery below the slopes of Mt. Evans (a 14er):
It has all the items you listed. 5 miles in, ~2000' elev gain. Petty area. It is where I often took people for a beginners backpacking trip.
From a trip I took ~5 yrs ago:
Now, about Pikes Peak.
You can stay at Barr Camp (http://www.barrcamp.com/).
It is in the trees, is pretty..but busy. Reminds me of an AMC Hut in many ways.
But you could hike a little further and camp at the A-Frame area. A lean to, with plenty of camping nearby. At the cusp of treeline with great views. About half-way up.
Going down Pikes Peak makes for aLONG day esp. if you are new to Colorado. 7 miles down with nearly 7000' elev loss.
A woman I dated at the time really wanted to do Pikes Peak (she lived at the nearby air base as a child). I normally avoid 14ers like the plague, but a cute red-head has a strange effect on me. :D Anyway, on the hike down she was BEAT. If you do Pikes, and are new to Colorado, you may want to take the train down and/or hitch down (there is a road).
Better, yet, avoid Pikes Peak. With a gift shop, a rail way and an autoroad AND being a 14er, it is the Mt. Washington of the Rockies in terms of crowds. Blech!
There are better and less crowded 14ers out there. Better yet, avoid the 14ers (and crowds) and do a 13er that no one goes to. ;)
As for igloos...yep, it was pretty neat. Though, now I do hut trips where i can show off my culinary skills...and drink wine. ;)
FINALLY..I am doing this hike next week. If you want to know more, and join us for it, PM me. Great way to meet people if you are new to Colorado.
Casual and social pace to a beautiful little area:
What: Cooling down by going up (dusk hike)
When: Wednesday 7/23 6pm
Where: Lost Lake
Contact: Paul Mags
Details: It has been hot, very hot, lately.
Uber-dry air, sweltering temperatures well into the evening. The kind of weather that conjures up images of (depending upon your mindset) Tennessee Williams plays, cold lemonade on the porch or maybe cranking up the AC, watching some awful TV and drinking some equally bad, but cold and cheap beer (or being Boulder, $8+ a six pack beer? :D)
There is another and better way to cool off, though: Hiking at dusk to a sub-alpine lake. Enjoy the views, relax and get away from the heat.
On this excursion, we'll hike to Lost Lake via the Hessie Trailhead. The TH is not far from the small hamlet of Eldora.
At less than 3 miles r/t and ~800' elev gain, it is the perfect after work stroll. The lake itself is peaceful, with good views towards the mountains above. The drive itself is only about 45 minutes or so as well.
The lighting at dusk is perhaps when the mountains and lakes look their best and is great for the photography enthusiasts among us.
So cool down by going up!
More info: http://www.protrails.com/trail.php?trailID=29
We should be back in Boulder by 9:30 or so.
Please RSVP if interested.
DOGS: Your furry, four footed companion can come, but the pooch must be on a leash.
Oh I WISH i could come. I am neck deep in the job hunt and have some interviews and such set up! That sounds amazing! I will try to plan a Chicago lakes trip though! Thanks a bunch Mags!
No worries. Enjoy the Chicago Lakes trip. The trailhead is near Idaho Springs so it is not far at all from Denver.
Once you get settled in..seriously, give me a holler. Many good people in the outdoor group I lead trips for..