Camped at mm Durango, Colorado
We camped with Laura and Ruthless again, our lovely womanly Trail Family. Tramily. The first Tramily I’ve ever created in all my hiking. A wonderful crew of women.
It rained last night, and Stoney and I got up at 4am to try to get a head start on the other two. We were getting a ride from Ruthless’s family, John and Betty, at the finish line, and we didn’t want to hold anyone up. Ruthless, in her 60’s, is a much faster hiker than we are. Especially at this point.
We just hobble along with our injuries and do our best to keep moving.
We kept working on our list as we walked. Number of Trips to Urgent Care -1.
We also worked on trail names for Laura, eventually landing on the name Bolt, since she was A) Always running from lightning, and B) A Super Fast Hiker. We texted the idea to Ruthless, who was with Laura. Laura loved it and adopted it immediately. Apparently she’d already been planning a Colorado Trail tattoo with a lightning bolt on it.
Perfectly Fitting. She may have even teared up a little bit.
We were so done with the trail, we Walked In Silence for most of the day, lost in our own thoughts about What Happens Next. Once in a while, the silence would be broken with thoughts of our next adventure, or what needed to be done once we got home. Clean the House, or Have an Ice Cream Social, or what it’s like to Poop on a Flush Toilet Every Day like Civilized People.
Things We Won’t Miss: 1. Getting Up Off The Ground….2. Rationing Toilet Paper…
Things We Will Miss: 1. Aspen Forests…2. Walking in the morning darkness and being aware of the world waking up while the sun rises.
Our last bridge. Our last creek crossing. Our last uphill. Our last downhill.
Our Last Everything.
Stoney waited for me once she saw the sign, and we walked to it together, whooping and hollering into a parking lot of people who either didn’t care, or who were waiting for someone else. Our whoops landed silent in dead air. We didn’t care. It was over.
Bolt’s husband, Reed, was there and he took photos for us while he waited for Bolt and Ruthless, since we actually arrived before them for once in our lives.
We laid out our tents to dry, trying to keep them from touching all the dog poo lying around, and happily threw a bunch of stuff away. All our trash. My opsak that the stupid mouse chewed a hole in all those weeks ago. My wool pants with the crotch worn out from the friction of walking.
I tried to throw out my socks too, but Stoney stopped me. She said I was overzealous and maybe they just needed a good washing.
We gathered Ruthless and Bolt into our arms when they showed up and we all had photos together.
We went to the visitor’s center, signed their hiker book, and received a patch and a sticker for completing the trail. Then we crossed the street to a thrift store where I bought a mega-cute outfit with bright colors to wear home.
We went to the hostel and showered and did laundry before we all went out for pizza with about 10 other finishers. It was Fantastic. All these people who may have otherwise spent their victory night alone.
Stoney had organized the whole thing. She’s so good about that. Taking care of people and all. Look at what she did for me for 43 days.
We walked back to the hostel with Brainfrog after pizza, and we all had good hugs and then went our separate ways.
Hoping to be, but maybe never to be, seen again.