Mileage: 4.5 miles!
It's morning!! Who even slept last night??? Our not so pretty makeshift cow poop camp was the best we could do at 8:45 PM at night.. Head lamps could only luminate no further than 9 incheds in front if our noses. And the fermented trough water was not too inviting ..
Nooo , the trail did not break us.. We started singing ... "Let it go, let it gooooo... Blah, blah , blah.. Let it go, we are almost done🌲🌲... Cow poop and cold never bothered us anyway..."🐂
As we were giggling about our finish and the reunion with seeing " dad" , " Honey" and Hannah, we see a headlight ( we were up like at 5:11 am),, coming oh way. It was another Moutain bike racer heading for Durango!! Simultaneously we hoot out loud from inside of our tents. . "" woo hoo.. Go!" The biker chuckled and in between breathes he mumbles out " ha, thanks!"
With that, we unzip our rents, slide on our stinky smelly trail clothes for the very last time on the Colorado trail, slither on our starchy sweaty socks that have formed a perfect impression of our toughened feet. Gently slide our rough callused feet into our ever so broken in boots, lace them up not too tight but just right.
Packs on, cinched up around our shrunken hips and stretched out shoulders from the harness. Hat on, pulled down over our really pretty unbrushd and unwashed stringy trail hair. Smile at each other. And we start our final hike down , and yes it really was a down hill stroll.. Somber moments suggested a forever life changing experience . Teary eyes the entire last 4 miles.
From a Moms thought: slowly with each mile my trail name Zippy starts to morph back into "Mom"... I am a mom first and foremost. The heartfelt emotions are trickling down my cheeks with pride for me and my perfect "Pippy ". Such a tremendous love I have for both of my beautiful daughters . Not one day did I ever stop thinking about how special they are to me . And not one day did I not think about how overwhelming amazing this journey with my daughter Pippy on this trail had been.
I will soon be reuniting with my husband of which I have not seen for the past 51 plus days. It has been the longest time spent apart from him. How do I smell ? And do I look now, is all I can think of.
And then I will also get to see dear sweet Hannah who insisted that I take a bus instead of hiking from Denver to Durango .,
Our trail buddy named "Sparkle " is in the lead now with her ever so faithful side shadow named "Sir Harrison". Suddendly we are approached by a a solo early morning jogger. Sparkle barks out, " Good morning!"...jogger man nods a polite "good morning".., I pipe in " we JUST hiked from Denver" !!!!. Pippy bellies out behind me with a happy squeal of .. "Woo hoo"!!!... And with the rest of the final three and a half miles that is exactly what happened when we passed on coming jiggers ... Miost stopped and gave us a commending pause followed by a big smiley face, "Wow, Congratulation.."!! Clapping excitedly for us.. Others gave a ".. you hiked from where look"?
Oh yes, the tears are free falling now. Our tummies are growling for real food , but the anticipation overrides the hunger.
I gently ask Pippy , " what are going to do when you see "Dad"?... She humbly replies ... " I am going to cry".. Then I asked her the same question about her sister . Yep, you guessed it.. " I am going to cry".
Twenty nine high school cross countyrunners later, we are passed by the same first jogger . He happily reports that we are ALMOST to the end ... !
And then we rounded the corner and my Pippy blurts out... "Daaaaad"!!!!!! . I look beyond and sure enough , there in the morning sun along side with her sister Hannah is my handsome husband and Pippy's Dad. And a surprise show from uncle Chris who gave us a congratulation hug too . Thanks uncle Chris!
It was the best stinky hug I could ever give to my smiling teared up husband/Dad and Hannah. I just broke out and cried .We did a family hug and stood together in wonderful smelliness.
The only picture I have of our finish is this one standing in front of the Colorado trail sign that you can either start from or end at. Pippy, Zippy, Sparkle and Sir Harrison. We didi it!!!!!
A most momentous ending ...
Let's get some real food to eat!!
At Carvers having our victory beer with "Dr. Nooo, Sparkle , Pippy and Zippy!!
Instead of a drunken spur of the moment trail bonding tattoo disasters, we opted for trail bracelets... Can you say , ahhhhhh?
Our parting ways in downtown Durango ended around noon thirty. Hugged each trail buddy at least three times . Promises to meet up again we quickly repeated. Next journey ?? Only the winds of time will tell. Tentively??? Great "plans" to meet in Spain to "walk" the El Camino in 2016... Join us!
Pippy starts her new job in Montetey as a Speech Language Pathologist in a private practice. Her roommate "Harrison " will join her. Yoga will be her daily routine and plans to hike and explore the Big Sur area .🐱 Zippy returns home to Hawaii to continue working at a Veterans Hospital In the rehab department.. Or be a stay home mom and hike on the weekends.
Perfect Pippy !!
Sparkle returns back to Denver with plans to move into her OWN place with her trail dog Sir Harrison the second. Future nursing school is part of the plan. Go sparkle!!
Sir Harrison the second !!
Dr. Noooo, returns to Vermont to continue making his famous trekking videos and had decided he loves his new trail name!!! Who wouldn't ??
Ah , yeah., it's Dr. Noooooo
Oh and what about Hobbit??? He has returned to Hawaii , shaved his trail worthy beard and cut his gangly stingy hair. ( wonder if he donated it??) and he has also decided to continue his educational studies.. Physics ? Go hobby !!
Aloha trail peeps for your uplifting comments and enthusiasm with our Colorado Trail thru hike 2014!!!!
"It's not the destination, it's the journey"
For my mom.. And the memories of my dad .
My life is, because of the both of you .