CDT Montana 2016
Start near 23-455M along Straight Creek, 12.9 miles from Benchmark Trailhead
Stop beyond 24-093XX, 9.8 trail miles inside Bob Marshall Wilderness
An alternate trail to Benchmark continues along Straight, and, looking back, that should have been my route.
Instead we zig-zag up a different path. Rock bluffs look down on the trail.
Ford that river.
Arriving at the intersection to depart the CDT and walk a few miles to Benchmark Ranch, I met some backpackers finishing their section hike who offer me a ride.
That makes them certified trail angels.
Benchmark Ranch is located near the one stretch of CDT that is too far between trail towns. Hikers really do not want to carry more than six or so days of food at a time.
Benchmark Ranch, which operates a hunting/fishing/cabin/trail-ride business at the edge of the Bob Marshall Wilderness, offers a for-pay service to let hikers mail them boxes which are brought up to the cabin.
Several boxes were waiting with mine.
A hiker box held extra supplies for us to investigate.
The trail angels say the airfield is open to anybody, but gets heavily used by Forest Service during some fire operations.
Back to the CDT, it is time to enter the vast Bob Marshall Wilderness.
A fancy bridge symbolizes entrance into the Wilderness.
On a mountain, lines of alive and dead trees mark the advance of bark beetle.
Got my supplies. Get to start a rugged and amazing section of trail. Good day.