Trail Journals Photos – 2013 Continental Divide Trail – Bear Safety Information

Wyoming Walk Day 12: Friendly Shuttle, Farewell, and Fire.

Around 9 a.m. we hopped the shiny black Jeep owned by Gary, the seasonal host at the KOA. He was excited to have the opportunity to drive us back up to Union Pass. He had not yet been up there, and shuttling us would be a good excuse to explore.
This time, we rode inside the vehicle instead of in the truck bed, having lively conversation about Gary’s new lifestyle – Work Kamping – living out of an RV and traveling from seasonal position to position. In their second year, he and his wife were enjoying the journey.

At Union Pass, Gary the hiker, said farewell to us and headed off on a different route. He was aiming for the “high” route along the Continental Divide, looking forward to places like Iceberg Lake and to skirting glaciers at high altitude.

We,on the other hand, would be taking a low route. Our challenge would be taking a detour around an active forest fire, the Green Fire. We stopped at the Shoshone Forest Ranger Station in Dubois on our way back to the trail, to get current information about the fire and the CDT trail closure. The ranger gave us a map, clearly indicating the closed route and an alternative.

Our first challenge was not the fire, however. It was a bear trap near a cow carcass very close to the trail. Some campers had alerted us to it before we passed that way unawares. We could see the trap, a big green cage open and baited. We were told that the bear had been coming up the gulch to the carcass. That’s just where our trail went! We played it safe and took a cross-country detour well away from the trap and the gulch. No sign of the bear!

Late in the afternoon, we stood high above the Green Fire area. Perched nearby was a USFS truck with rangers watching the fire. Just at 5 p.m. we surprised them at their window! They weren’t expecting visitors. They had been just about to leave, telling us that the fire was diminishing and not dangerous. Nonetheless, we would avoid the CDT through that area, taking a 4-mile detour to the west and across the Green River to the road.

We walked along for an hour, believing that we were on the trail AWAY from the fire. Instead, we kept heading east, not west, and soon realized that the plume of smoke we had seen high up from Gunsight Pass was directly in our path!

We took a sharp turn and walked cross-country down the forested and tangled slope, picking our way over fallen logs and through thick beds of moss, finally reaching the open valley and Roaring Fork “Road”, which was really a very old and vague path. After an unsuccessful search for a shortcut directly south across the Roaring Fork River and valley, we camped for the night in a quiet, soft piney forest, resigned to finding our way in the morning.

Sunset in the smoky valley had been a real treat.
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Trail Journals Photos – 2013 Continental Divide Trail – Dubois KOA

Wyoming Walk Day 11. Town Day!
Today is a “zero” day in Dubois, WY. The focused activities are: laundry, shower, eat, communicate, and, for me do something about my shoes. I really want to continue hiking without hurting feet!
The first tasks were easily accomplished at the KOA and along the one street of Dubois. We chose to rent one of the Kamper Kabins, a one room log hut with a double bed and a bunk. Perfect for the three of us and easier for spreading out our gear than a tent.

The showers here are great and WiFi is available.
I’ve updated my subscribers with a longer email than the 160 character notes I’ve been sending by inReach and made some calls to family members.

We had a big breakfast at the Cowboy Cafe, which seems to be popular with a good portion of the tourists. And there are some other CDT hikers too! Gary was especially happy to meet someone he had met on his previous hike.

John and I took a walk around town in search of shoes. We first checked at the Opportunity Shop, the second hand store here. We both found socks for twenty-five cents! I bought a pair of shorts that can replace my torn ones. I’ll wear them and send my dress home. Although I enjoy the looseness of the dress, it’s warm under my long sleeved shirt which protects my arms from the sun. So, it’s back to shorts and shirt for me. Alas, the only shoes there were Reeboks a full size larger than mine.
We looked at the outfitters too. Again, some super Keens, but only in size 7, which seem a bit too big. I didn’t want to experiment with $128 shoes!

At 3 p.m. I changed my mind about the shoes, having put mine back on. Even with the thin socks, they just cramp my toes too much! I took a walk back to the Opportunity Shop and tried on those size 7 Reeboks. They felt cushy and maybe not too big. I bought them for $4.50 and walked back to KOA with dancing toes.

Last stop in Dubois was the Exxon Station for a ride on the alleged “Jackalope”.
Well, the photo says it all – all out whimsy!

I was almost completely satisfied with our town stop, except for the desire to clean up my inReach communicating. I spent a good hour in the laundry room connected to WiFi in the wee hours of the night, setting up a “recipe” on (If This Then That) to have my Facebook link posts go to my son’s email so he could then share those with my subscribers by email. Maybe that would work.

Something we missed by being in town was the Perseid Meteor Shower. Funny that the nights of celestial activity we were in town instead of on the mountain!
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