Fire Break

by Gillian Larson | posted: June 7, 2018
Chama River, NM

So sometimes the difficulty with a long distance trail like this is snow, and sometimes it is fire. Unfortunately, as happens somewhere along the trail every year, there is a fire closure on a section of the trail north of Cuba. Thankfully, there isn’t an actual fire (at least not here; there is one currently burning outside of Durango, and that is causing other problems), but it does mean that I will be unable to ride about 40 miles of trail that just a couple weeks ago was open to travel.

Beautiful views from the mesa

Officially, the trail closure boundary on the north is at the Chama River, but most hikers have to hitch around from Cuba to Ghost Ranch, skipping more than 60 miles. I got permission to have my mother drive down to the Chama River trail crossing and pick me up there, so I will get to do a bit more than most people on the CDT right now are able to access. I am riding Takoda today, and after my mother picks me up, we will head south to Cuba, where I will then ride north to the other side where the closed section starts. Earlier in May, I had ridden south from Cuba to Grants, where I then had to abbreviate my planned section when the truck was impounded. So once we get to Cuba, we will be “connecting the dots” on the northernmost point of the trail that I had reached before my hiatus in May.

Takoda looking down at the Chama River

The ride today was basically just a half-day of trail, about 15 miles, as we climbed up to a mesa with amazing views before dropping down to meet my mother where the CDT crossed the Chama River.


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