Thursday, June 30, 2011

Luders Creek to Del Norte

I had mixed feelings about arriving in Del Norte today, after all it was at least a 55 mile journey. Regardless, I set out to see how I would fare. Hopping in and out of the Rio Grande National Forest led to some wonderful scenery and brightly colored outcrops. A short climb up Canero Pass landed my at the Storm King campground which was actually under construction. I saw some familiar faces from Salida and filled my water bottles from the nearby creek. If I did not make it to Del Norte, at least I was in National Forest and able to camp anywhere. Right after leaving the Storm King CG, the heavens opened enough for the rain jacket, and I sat on the side of the road for half and hour until I could see the edge of the storm and quickly roll down the hill and out of its way. Still slightly wet I headed for the Penitent Canyon, a renowned sight for climbers and campers alike. The legs and ACL started to feel the length of the day as I skirted the Elephant Outcrops on the outskirts of Del Norte. Never before have I been to happy to see a large D on the side of a mountain, signaling the end of a day. Its difficult to keep motivated during many of these days, since every turn leads to another and every turn leads to another. But this D similar to Salida's glowing S (and heart shape) gave me confidence. Roads were generally in good shape for most of the day, and the San Luis Valley was certainly intriguing for those that have never experienced the sight. Tomorrow I climb out of Del Norte to the highest peak on the divide. In order to do this I will be climbing 4000ft in under 24 miles, to me that means an early start an extra peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

P.S. A new slideshow in the tool bar on the right showcases pictures that have not been included in the posts! Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Great reading and enjoyed the slide show! I'm inspired to start the serious planning for my little 190 mile walk next spring!!