O’ Canada! – The Great Divide Trail

Way back in the summer of 2009, I enjoyed the gift of time.

An off-trail route in the Canadian Rockies outside of Jasper. Summer 2009.

I hiked the Benton MacKaye Trail and enjoyed the southern Appalachians, bummed around and skied quite a bit, went to the desert Southwest and enjoyed the outdoors in general.

One plan did not materialize for various reasons. A thru-hike on Canada’s Great Divide Trail.

A teaser trip that summer only hinted at the majesty of the Canadian Rockies.  Huge vertical relief of the mountains, vast glaciers, and craggy mountain landscapes that surpass my adopted home in the Colorado Rockies.

I never forgot my time in Canada. Nor did I ever wholly forget a dream to hike in the Canadian Rockies for an extended time.

So here it is towards the end of my sabbatical. Time for one last hike before I go back to employment.

And what better hike than in the Canadian Rockies?

The older GDT logo. Which I prefer to the newer one.

The Great Divide Trail (GDT) is a route that appeals to me quite a bit. And, unlike 2009, there are more resources to hike it.  The hike is not easier, but both planning and the logistics are simpler.

An app is available, maps are easily downloaded and printed, and a good GDT website has lots of resources. And I have many friends who hiked the trail.  My gut feeling is that hiking this trail falls somewhere along the spectrum between a CDT hike and my Utah trek last Fall concerning difficulty (be it logistics, navigation, planning, trail quality, etc.). But, it would not be the first time I’ve been wrong, either. 🙂

I’ll be flying into Calgary July 19th and hope to be on the trail July 20th. From there I will work my way southbound. The trail through Waterton Lakes-Glacier International Peace Park is closed due to fire damage (I recall an article about this topic! ). An alternative route is in place for now.   I’ll make my third selfie of the trip, end my journey, and make my way back to the USA.

Then I’ll go back to employment.

More details to come.

For now, Canada beckons!

All the Great Divide Trail entries.

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Dan Durston
5 years ago

Stoked for you. Gonna be awesome.