Today is the day.

The beginning of the Continental Divide Trail (CDT). After much planning, and a year delay, it's time to start walking.

There's not much out here in southern New Mexico - some border patrol stops, and a couple of towns from another era, trying to hang on.
Entry to Mexico is barred.
The southern terminus, "Crazy Cook", is at the Mexican/US border, and similar to the Arizona Trail, it consists of a barely-there wire fence.

Normal CDT Hiker season starts in mid-April, but in early March, there's no one there except for my ride and I - no one else for countless miles.

How's that for social distancing.

2pm. It was past time to get going.
The trail goes this way
It was a grumpy day, which is ideal, considering there is no shade out here. On a hot, cloudless day, the sun would be brutal. On this day, however, it was quite pleasant.

There's really no trail to speak of; nothing except wilderness and some cows, and signs marking the way. Walk to one sign, then spot the next sign, and repeat.
A road is just as good as a trail in these parts
I'm happy to report that the Mark VIII pack performed well on his inaugural trek, even though I had not tested it at all.

I used the same design as the Mark VII, except without hip belts.

Is it a good idea to walk a major trail using an untested pack without hip belts?
Probably not. Is this what we're doing?

Yep.

As a result, however, I have to be very cognizant about what I carry; there's not a lot of room for extra weight.

It was very clear that I had too much food. I remembered later on that I had packed a red bell pepper and an avocado that I had planned to eat before starting the trail, but had forgotten.

Both foods are extremely heavy.
Also, my knife is being shipped, as I didn't bring it in my carry-on for the flight to El Paso. Have you ever tried to eat an avocado without cutting it with a knife first?

No. I don't imagine you have.

I wouldn't recommend it.

Also. I have this pot. It's 4 oz. I don't want it. I never want to use it.

Hot food is nice, but it takes too long. Maybe I'll need it in the future, but for now, it has to go.


Miles 13.7
Confidence 80%