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Trip Dispatch #49: Wednesday, July 6: Twin Lakes to Mt. Massive Trailhead: Three Incredible Women

Pete first went to the general store and picked up our mail drop. In the meantime, I packed up our stuff and kept an eye on the horses. At one point I noticed that Rainbow was missing, and I began looking for her. I surmised that she probably took off after Pete, and had been picked up a motorist. My one thought about this was that life without her would be inconceivable. I eventually found her on the top deck of the cabin. Her doggy grin suggested that this was a one-sided joke. I hadn’t known where she was, but all along, she knew where I was.

We continued on the Colorado Trail, alongside the highway. I was wondering how we were going to get across it when suddenly we came to an underpass. If, I thought, this was a hiker and horse-friendly world, there would be more such things.

There were, in the afternoon, several long climbs followed by long descents. There were (again) innumerable switchbacks and rocky sections. This, combined with thunder, lightening, and rain on the lee side was a unnerving.

We’d heard from hikers that there were three women who were both hiking the Colorado Trail and on the side, running up and down the 14,000 footers—as in mountains above 14,000 feet. We finally met them; they were camped by the

Creek at Mt. Massive Trailhead
Creek at Mt. Massive trailhead


Grazing below Mt. Massive


trail’s edge. All were about college age, thin, athletic. I later regretted not getting their names or a photo. They were an inspiration to the rest of us couch potatoes.

We finally arrived at the Mount Massive Trailhead. On the way to our campsite, Raudi balked—the reason being there were rocks being tossed about in the culvert beneath us. I shook her mane with my free hand and she moved on. After dinner, Pete and I walked a long ways in search of an outhouse. Seeing a large group of young campers made me nostalgic for my days as a girl scout.

Next: Trip Dispatch #50: On to Basecamp