My first two weeks on the CDT were incredible, and tough! The permit system for backcountry camping in Glacier National Park is a bit complicated, and with all of the Northbounders flipping up due to snow in Colorado, the permits became VERY limited. I found myself having to do big miles right off the bat with massive climbs each day while also carrying bear spray and a bear can, extra weight I'm not used to. Fortunately, the incredible views absolutely made up for the intensity of this first week on trail!
I was able to recover from Glacier NP at Looking Glass Base Camp in East Glacier Park, a wonderful family-run hostel that absolutely "gets" hikers. Spacemaker and I were able to slackpack a section northwest of town and then headed into the Bob Marshall Wilderness, one of the most remote areas of the entire trail. Less than a quarter mile south of town, I saw a bear right on trail! It was as startled by me as I was by it, and with a soft "Hey bear!", it darted off into the woods at full speed. I hiked "The Bob" on my own, starting to push my body and mind to see what I could do. There were many knee-deep river crossings and I began to forget what it felt like to have dry feet! I hiked my first trail marathon (26.2 miles!) on day 11, despite my heavy load, wet feet and a LOT of mud. I'm excited to see what my body can do when my hiker legs fully come in!!