View Full Version : low sections for winter
I know that most of the trail is at high elevations, but are there any sections (say for a week or two) that one could do in January maybe in New Mexico or Wyoming? What are the longest low elevation sections?
Thanks for any advice. I'm thinking this isn't too feasible, but figured I'd ask. Not really looking to deal with tons of snow.
Any other suggestions for a good place to backpack in January (not interested in Florida) would be great, thanks!
Here is what I posted on the CT forum:
Ghost Ranch to Grants was very nice. The mesa walking along the new single track tread was among the highlights of the CDT for me. Red rock canyon country. In the Ghost Ranch area is where Georgia O' Keefe painted. Just before you get into Grants, you'll climb to the top of Mt. Taylor (11k+) and see the desert you juts hiked. Pretty cool! The whole stretch is fairly well marked portion of trail, too (by CDT standards! :D) . It is a total of ~260 miles. About right for a two week hike at a good pace. You can do an easy in and out (no hitching!) resupply in Cuba, NM during this stretch.
BONUS: Easy bus service (Greyhound) out of Grants. From there you can get to Albuquerque and from there, anywhere. Naturally, you can reverse this route, too. Start at Grants and end at Ghost Ranch.
Photos: http://www.pmags.com/joomla/index.ph...2_itemId=14373 (http://www.pmags.com/joomla/index.php/component/option,com_gallery2/Itemid,36/?g2_view=core.ShowItem&g2_itemId=14373)
(pp 1 - 3 has the trail area)
The caveat of course is that it will be cold AND Mt. Taylor (and possibly Pedro Park) will probably have some snow (but you can walk around it if need be via dirt roads).
Not nearly as much snow as here in Colorado...never mind most of Wyoming or MT.
Also maybe NM from the border north a ways, possibly up to the Gila, depending on which route. That's just over a week, probably, and mainly road walking. The Wolf route in on trail but heads up in to higher country, like the Mimbres and Signal Pk, so maybe not that way if the snow falls. The Gila is probably not a good place to go in January. In '07, a hiker got stuck in snow there in late October, I think, and had a hard time.
Maybe 'Slogger can tell us what the Great Divide Basin is like in January. But that's good for 5-6 days, not much more, and might be really nasty if the wind blows, which, of course, it will.
Two years ago Wildcat got stuck out in the snow for a week and got frostbite on both feet, between Pie Town and Doc Campbell's (the Gila). This was in early December.
A better option for winter might be trails in Arizona. For instance the GET or AZT route through the Superstitions would be outright pleasant in winter.