Monday, April 17, 2017

Telephone Pioneer Shelter to Morgan Stewart Shelter

We had another beautiful New York sunrise.

James Pray added a Maine Moxie can to the wind chime at Telephone Pioneer.

Emily Hodgdon's group met some slack-packing thruhikers from Our neck of the woods (Damariscotta).

Isaac St. Ours added some "dead things" to his carved walking stick. He then found a fishing lure up a tree at Nuclear Lake and added that as well.

After 7.6 miles of hiking we arrived at Morgan Stewart Shelter where a sunken fire pit awaited a warming fire and Stephanie Jones charcoal drawings.

Firefighter James Pray was called away from the fire to respond to Brooke Keach's emergency of an outhouse locked from the inside. Sirens WERE used.

Night falls on our mountain.

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Wiley Shelter to Telephone Pioneer Shelter

We awoke to a beautiful Resurrection Sunday sunrise yesterday.

The only pre-trail noteworthy item was Jen Keach losing half her tooth while eating breakfast. The hike was 8.8 miles in 80 degree heat. Everyone progressed well throughout most of the trail which was diverse in its elements. Puncheon was plentiful. Crossing cow pastures included the traversing of stiles. I was unable to accomplish this gracefully.

Heading out ahead of the pack into the fields, Peg and I held the lead for five minutes. We took a selfie to commemorate the monumental moment.

The day also included boardwalk through the swamp (with Maine and Georgia Adirondack chairs) and the gradual ups and downs of a ridge walk.

Then came the last two miles, which sapped all energy. It was hot. We were tired. It was a hill. The boys, who arrived at Telephone Pioneer before us, gave blessed relief by coming back and carrying our packs for the last 1/2 mile.
We were all in bed by eight and I was too tired to blog. Today will only be in the 50's and 1 mile shorter.

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Saturday, April 15, 2017

Winding up to Wiley

The brevity of today's hike allowed for a quick side trip up the road from the trailhead to Bull's Bridge, built in 1842. -

We spent a few minutes of the trail in CT before crossing into NY, where we will spent the duration of the hike. This is the same part of the trail that I hiked on my first trip about 7 years ago and it will be interesting to see how my endurance compares to that year. I felt like I did much better today than on that first day years ago. The lungs burned much less. I've enjoyed seeing landmarks that are familiar and remembering the memories associated with people no longer doing the hike. I particularly miss my fellow Turtle, Liz Brown! New memories are made each year, however and it's a good crew.

It was lovely to only have a two mile hike this first day up to Wiley Shelter, getting tents set up leisurely and having the entire evening to relax. Wiley even has a lending library!

Tomorrow will be a long, hot 9 miles, so I lay my head down to rest amid the light spattering of rain on my tent.

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Bacon Binge

Our morning has consisted of carpooling to Connecticut for one last civilized meal and indoor plumbing use until Wednesday. I'm missing Nolan, who sprained his ankle on Sunday, forfeiting the hike. This has left me with only my most favored "son" Isaac, who proudly declared at the breakfast buffet, "I have consumed enough bacon so that they have not made a profit off of me."

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33.3 at 5:55

And the 2017 AT Hike begins before dawn...Starting weight (with water) of my pack this year is 33.3lbs. We hit 295 South at 5:55am. Fishkill, NY is the destination.

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

Weighing the Options

You know the AT Hike is right around the corner when you choose your rice cakes not based on which flavor you prefer but which will be lighter to carry.

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West Bath, Maine, United States