6am and we were hiking. This constant need to hit the snow before it softens is exhausting. But it must be done. The soft snow makes for slow going and can also be dangerous.
We follow the west trout river to its source and the junction with the CDT. It is almost 11am. Spontaneous wants to hike part of the infamous ‘knifes edge’. I traverse across a very steep 50 degree slope. On my first sight of it I could see no tell tale signs of other hikers going across.
Spontaneous set off. I told him not to fall. If he did there was no way I would be able to help him. There was no way I was going across it. There were signs of several avalanches. Some being very recent. He made it a short way then returned to show me the crazy video.
We climbed to the top of the next pass which was just over half a mile away but about 600 feet above us. We sat at the pass and looked at our maps. Reality set in. We would not make it to destination of Lake City. Nor would we make it to the closer Silverton. Yesterday we put in a huge physical effort and we were worn out. Spontaneous is meeting his girlfriend in only a couple of days, he obviously didn’t want to miss that date.
With heavy hearts we admitted a temporary defeat. With our tails between our legs we descended to Trout river. We plan our escape to the town of Creede. There is an alternate route called the Creede Cutoff. It goes through the town. This route has become popular because it avoids the high mountains and puts the hiker further north into Colorado quite quickly. I’m now torn what to do.