Day 6, 7/13
We wake up in heaven, aka a dirty, smoker motel room that has a bed and a shower, and try to sleep in but we can’t sleep past 7:30. Our hiker body clocks are already changing I guess. I decide I want to at least TRY to sleep more, so I lay there until 8:30 or so, just because I can. Finally we stir and pack up our things. Down the street at a little coffee/breakfast place I order a mocha, a blueberry bar, and a mango ginger tuna wrap. Yummm! Real food! We eat, I’m stuffed.
After checking out we make our way down Main Street until we get to the end of town where we stick our thumbs out. Hitching is so much fun, I think. It’s all part of the adventure. Within minutes a lady in a Subaru picks us up and takes us to Alma, half way between Fairplay and Breckenridge. It then only takes us a few more moments of standing on the street to get picked up again. Bear, a traveling artist, drives us to Breckenridge while giving us a small tour of which peaks are what, where the best lake is, the best towns, places to stay and eat, etc.. When she drops us off she gives us her business card and a sincere handshake and says “you have my number if you need anything. Don’t think that you don’t have a friend in Colorado now!” We almost cry. Everyone here is so incredibly nice I can hardly believe it. I love people!
Breckenridge is a busy, touristy little up-class ski town at an elevation of about 9,600 ft. As much as we’d love to explore, we have work to do. First it’s to the outdoor shop to check out new shoes and a new water filter. They don’t have the shoes Simone wants, and they don’t have the water filter I want. I make a call to another gear shop in Dillon, two towns away, and find my filter. This means another hour of sitting on the bus just to get a new water filter, but we despise that thing enough that it’s completely worth it. Next stop, the clinic for Simone’s feet. We sit for a good hour and a half until they finally take her in. Doc prescribes antibiotics, gives her some tape and some advice. We get out if the clinic and head straight for “Vertical Runner, Americas highest running store”. Cool. The dude there is knowledgable and helpful and he finds the right shoes for Simone and makes sure they fit and feel perfect. Brooks Cascadia’s… Of course. Everyone wears Brooks Cascadia’s on the trail.
Now that Simone’s feet are all squared away we hop on the bus and sit for over an hour as it drives us to the Dillon for my filter. At the outdoor shop we meet an awesome dude, Ben, who offers us a ride back to Breck when he gets off work. Sweet! A ride back to Breck leads to a stop at the Breckenridge Brewery for a salad and beers, and then, if that’s not enough, a ride to the grocery store for our next 3 days’ food supply, and finally a ride to our hostel for the night. Ben remakes in the store that he feels like we’re already great friends. It’s true. Probably cause everyone here are the coolest, most friendly people ever and why wouldn’t we want to be great friends with the locals? We say our goodbyes and head into the prettiest hostel I’ve been in.
It’s brand new and beautiful, everything is log- inside and out. There is fancy decor, comfy couches, a giant fireplace, and a hot tub out back. Not to mention FREE breakfast in the morning! The man at the counter tells us to “tell him that we saw a coupon online” and obviously we DID see that coupon online… So he upgrades us to a room with 4 beds instead of 6. Just as fate would have it, our room mates are a couple who are also hiking the Colorado Trail, and we are friends immediately.
The four of us sit on our beds and the floor, talking about gear and food and pack weight and mileage… Hiking the trail vegan, why are we out here, where are we from, what will we do in the future. Just normal hiker things. Time flies by and suddenly it’s 11:30. The room goes dark and we crawl into bed, thankful for friends, a warm bed, and getting back on the trail in the morning.