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  1. #1

    Default Hitchhiking along the CT

    I unfortunately can't take 4-5 weeks off in a row from work but would like to hike the CT in one summer/fall (my favorite). I'm planning out weekend sections (some longer in the San Juans) but wondering if some of you found a particular trailhead a tough hitch out, especially after labor day where I like to do most of my hiking?

  2. #2
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    Took 3 hours to get a ride into Lake City, even with a ride bride. Two minutes later the free shuttle from town appeared.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyMan View Post
    Took 3 hours to get a ride into Lake City, even with a ride bride. Two minutes later the free shuttle from town appeared.
    Curious what the heck is ride bride?


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  4. #4

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    I believe that's the girl you put on the side of the road to flag down a car, then when the car stops the guy joins her. Solo guys have a much harder time getting a hitch.

  5. #5

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    It's getting tougher to get hitches it seems. Maybe I'm just getting old and scarier looking. Another strategy is to get a cheap dirt bike or enduro and a trailer hitch rack. Drop the bike off at the end of the hike then drive to your starting point. This plan forces you to stick to stick to a certain distance though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CO Native View Post
    It's getting tougher to get hitches it seems. Maybe I'm just getting old and scarier looking. Another strategy is to get a cheap dirt bike or enduro and a trailer hitch rack. Drop the bike off at the end of the hike then drive to your starting point. This plan forces you to stick to stick to a certain distance though.
    Nice thought but doubt that would fit in my carry on for the flight! I have thought about doing that on AT for section hikes but getting a shuttle is pretty easy...


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  7. #7

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    A ride bride is pretty tough to fit in your carry on as well.

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    I did a lot of hitching while solo section-hiking the CT over four consecutive years. I caught rides easily, but followed a few rules; You need to look at things from the driver's perspective. I always had a sign indicating where I was headed. This allowed drivers to know what I was up to. If they don't know where you're going, they may not want to spend a long ride with a smelly backpacker, and might pass you by. Make sure it is neatly written and easily read. A fat Sharpie marker and a hunk of construction paper weigh next to nothing in your pack. Always try to position yourself where they can see you from a distance, and have a safe shoulder to pull over. It also helps if your spot has a lower speed limit. You may have to walk a bit to find the ideal location, but it's worth it. The only place I had an issue was Highway 114, Section 17/18 - where the road is steep, fast, and curvy with blind turns.

  9. #9
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    I've hitched from or to most of the CT TH's and probably all the main ones in Aug, Sept, and Oct. It would be easier if you asked about specific TH's.

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    I have found hitching in Co to be very easy with the exception of Spring Creek Pass (Lake City and Creede). I arrived at Spring Creek in the early evening and it took about an hour to hitch either place, finally got a ride into Creede.
    enemy of unnecessary but innovative trail invention gadgetry

  11. #11

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    no problems hitching at any of the ct road crossings.

  12. #12
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    Disagree about all roads being easy hitches. As said 114 can be a hard two part hitch into/back out of Gunnisonfir reasons stated. Same with Bailey. Same with Lake City. Same if for some reason going into Buena Vista. Even getting into/back from Salida to Monarch Pass can be difficult. ALSO, getting to/back from via hitching to some of the CT West or East resupply or in or out options can be tricky. If hitching into/out of Durango going to wherever can require multiple hitches.

  13. #13

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    A friend was dropping me off at Waterton Canyon on Saturday and I was trying to do a long memorial day weekend on the CT and hitch back to summit county. That's probably a couple of long hitches home so I was trying to get a feel for Bailey and areas around that. I ended up just hiking first 6 segments so I got home via the CT with a small hitch from US 9 near Frisco at the end.

    Camped on top of Georgia pass last night which was pretty spectacular, coming down it this morning was a postholing adventure for sure.

    Like the dirt bike idea CO Native, thanks.

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    Had no problem hitching solo during my 2013 thru hike. But once my two buddies joined me we had a tough time (kept telling them this). I think Dogwood pretty much nailed which hitches were hardest. It's all part of the fun IMO.

  15. #15

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    From my 2011 thruhike:

    Buffalo Creek - couldn't get hitch into town - had to talk. Easy hitch back - we talked to a guy in the parking lot and offered him gas money..
    Kenosha Pass to Jefferson - easy both ways - the same guy drove us back
    Breckenridge - used the free bus
    Leadville - shuttle to/from Leadville hostel
    Twin Lakes - walked to general store, talked a family into driving us back
    Rt. 50 Salida - busy road but lucked out when someone we had met earlier happened by and rode us in. Return shuttle from Simple Hostel.
    Creede from San Luis Pass - toughest one - hiked down side trail, walked a mile on rough high-clearance road until a family picked us up. The next day, the outfitter returned us to the side trail for us to slackpack to Spring Creek Pass. Other shuttler didn't show up but managed to hitch 33 miles back to Creede, taking two rides. Shuttler returned us to Spring Creek Pass the next day.
    Silverton - quickest, easiest hitch yet. Shared a shuttle for return the next day.
    Durango - a guy we met on the final descent waited for us and shuttled us into town.

    All of this was prior to Labor Day.

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