Day 39 on the Continental Trail

Difficulty and confusion. I started hiking at 6:45. Bruce followed shortly. In a mile, the trail disappeared. I spent a half hour finding a way to cross a creek. We gained elevation thru willow thickets then around Summit Peak. The trail ran north across tundra to a point where the snow-covered trail curled around a cliff face. Six of us hikers didn’t want to attempt the steep traverse. Bruce and I backtracked for a quarter mile to a snow-free, south-facing slope. I headed down thinking that Bruce would follow. I got to the bottom then headed uphill back to the trail north of the problem spot. Bruce didn’t follow, perhaps because he was too tired from carrying his heavy pack. I continued on crossing numerous snowfields on north-facing slopes (see photo). Five miles miles later, I reached Elwood Pass where two Forest Service roads intersected. Just before the pass, hiker Deuces overtook me. It turned out that we met on the Appalachian Trail in 2016. I waited at the pass for Bruce then set up camp nearby. At 8 pm, hikers Peppers and The Girl told that a hiker was camped just before the pass. I walked over thinking it might be Bruce. It turned out to be Landstar. He told me that Bruce decided to camp on the mountain and that he would take care of himself. I was relieved that Bruce was ok. Only 9.8 miles today.

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