Starting location: South Cochetopa Creek
Ending location: Middle Mineral Creek
Distance: 12 miles (9 on CT + 3 climbing San Luis Peak)
Elevation gained: 4000 ft
Photo: San Luis Peak
1 word summary of the day: 14er
Today Veda and I climbed a 14er! San Luis Peak is only 1.5 miles and 1400 ft above the Colorado Trail, so we decided to have a little excursion and left our packs at the saddle to climb to the peak. It was a good idea to leave the packs, as it was a steep climb to the summit; mostly on loose scree and talus. Great views from the top though! We met a couple of other day hikers climbing the peak as well, including this family with two kids, ages 6 and 7, who were attempting their first 14er. Get em started young!
I think the combo of the peak climb with spending the majority of the day hiking above 12000 ft totally wiped me out though, as the last four miles were a killer for me and I was moving pretty slow. Hopefully tomorrow I'll be more acclimated to the above 12000 and will feel less sluggish, as we're spending most of the next couple of days hiking around that elevation.
So early to bed again tonight (plus needed to escape to the tent to avoid the Mosquitos - I didn't think that I would see them up this high!) and tomorrow we hike the Snow Mesa, which is a 10 mile stretch all above the tree line. We'll need to ensure that we finish that portion early in the day (like before noon) so that we're not left exposed should a big storm roll in (which is always likely). Never good to be the tallest thing around in a lightening storm!
Update: just after I got into my tent another hiker arrived at camp, and it was Hummingbird (Blake) who had hiked a marathon 22 miles today. I'm happy that he's caught up with us, as so far we've only hung out in town and not on the trail. Though depending how wrecked he is from today's hike he may or may not be camped with us tomorrow - we'll have to see how everyone is faring tomorrow after a (hopefully) good night's sleep!