Miette River Trailhead/Jasper (577.7mi/929.7km)-1km before Miette/Centre Pass Junction(596.9mi/960.6)
Daily Distance: 19.2mi/30.9km
Campsite Elevation: 6035ft/1839m
Elevation profile created by Zdenek on his 2014 GDT hike Thank you for allowing me to share these Zdenek!
Neither one of us got enough sleep while we were in town. How does this always happen!? We were both up by 6:15am this morning. E was up till midnight last night and I stayed up til 1:30am and still didn’t get everything done that I wanted to…oh well, I did what I could. We wanted to do some errands and grab breakfast before we left, so we left the hotel before 9am and were out to hitch back to trail around 11am. We tried to hitch for 5-10mins and a nice guy traveling to Vancouver to visit family gave us a ride…and this is when we saw our first bear of the hike! It was a black bear cub just walking near the highway. We drove right by the little guy and I really wished our driver would have stopped or turned around. I couldn’t even react it went by so fast. Of course, we’ve spent over a month out in the wilderness and our lone bear sighting is along a highway.
Lately, we’ve been hiking on fairly clear trail through Jasper with reserved campsites dictating mileage. The hiking today wasn’t too eventful, but it did put us back in that more natural GDT mode. The trails are fainter, have more overgrowth, and there’s no signage. We get to hike, independently of a campsite schedule, and hike longer days. The miles tend to be a bit slower and require more energy too. That’s what we have ahead of us these final two weeks. There is a short bit with reserved camps and cruising trail around Robson in a few days, but for the most part, we’re going to be in remote places and expect to see few, if any other hikers.
We started hiking at 12:20pm. The first half started out on a forest road for an hour and then a few hours were on a gradual uphill on a little maintained trail. We buffered time for bushwhacking and downed trees, and were pleasantly surprised to find out it was actually not bad. It appeared that someone had recently come through and cut many of the deadfall. THANK YOU to whoever did maintenance on that section! AThe trail had moments of brush, but nothing too bad. We were definitely glad it was finally dry cause the brush that was there would have gotten us quite wet.
After that stretch, the last couple hours of the the day were in a marshy alpine meadow area. You didn’t think we’d get through a day with dry shoes did you!? Good news is that the boggy marshy stuff wasn’t as bad as we anticipated.
Before we got soaked in the boggy stuff, we had fun creating our own ways across streams with dead wood and rocks. By the time we crossed, it was probably more time than taking our shoes off and putting them back on, but we had more fun our way.
It was actually more open and scenic in the boggy areas than we expected and we enjoyed it. Great expansive views of mountains around us. The trail was quite faint through the meadows. It disappeared at times, but we’d find it after a bit of searching. There were blazes at times or notches in trees to help guide the way at times.
It was hazy all day with and we could smell a fire when the wind blew. That’s always concerning and we are hoping it isn’t large or anywhere we’re headed.
We hiked til 7pm and stopped at a spot near a stream that was nice and cushiony without brush. It was a great spot and we even could see some of the mountains around us, but it was difficult to capture it in a photo.
We’ve gotten used to having hanging cables for our food, and it took some time to find a good tree and get the food up there. I’m pretty wiped out. I’ve been spoiled by the past leg of stopping early to camp. I’ve got to get back into this routine of fuller days now that we’re free to stop wherever we like. Probably no more shows at night for this trip…