So, I was told today by Baltimore Jack to plan on 37+ days from when I leave Hanover, NH to get to Katahdin. If that is the case, then I have a long way to go or I have some heavy miles to do! Anyway, we will see what happens. Baltimore Jack has hiked the trail multiple times, so maybe he knows something I do not know! I am looking at meeting Mike in Gorham, NH as that seems to be the best place based on road access. Anyway,...
The past few miles have been fun. Massachusetts ended with an unexpected trip to Boston, which was great. I spent the day sleeping. Every time Spice Rack attempted to talk to me, I was either on the phone, using the restroom, or sleeping. It was a much needed break and I got to meet his friends and family. So, I have met everyone in his life. Once back on the trail from Boston, we decided to take it easy and visit Bennington, VT for a hiker feed. We try not to pass up free food and beer. It was nice as we got to meet some South Bound(SOBOs) Hikers. The mix was pretty even for SOBOs & NOBOs. There is definitely a difference between the 2 groups. We have 1600miles under our belts and they have only 500. They are still in the excited to be doing this trip, whereas most of the NOBOs are ready for it to be done! We went to bed around 9pm and the SOBOs were still hanging out having fun! It is interesting to see the difference.
From Bennington, we did some long crazy miles to make it to our next meeting, which was Eben in Vermont. Eben is Mike's friend and we had him pick us up at the VT11. We had dinner with him and then he and his girlfriend, Sunny, took Spice Rack and I home with them to their place about an hour from the trail. We had a great time hanging out. Spice Rack talked to his girlfriend, while Eben showed me great videos of he and Mike when they were younger. It was exactly what I needed to keep me going. As he dropped us off at the trail the next day, he played "Sweet Honey Pie" by the Beetles as per Mike's request. It was sweet and just what I needed as I had called Mike from Bennington asking for a pep talk! I hiked the next day with a new outlook on the trail. I felt great. Of course it also helped knowing at the end of the day I was meeting my favorite aunts on the Soles side, Karen & Brenda.
So, I went from Eben's house, to the trail, to staying with my Aunts that night. Spice Rack tagged along with me and had a great time. We got a hotel room in Rutland, VT the first night. My aunts met me on the trail with a wonderful canoe trip call to which I of course had to answer back...Yip Yip Yip Yip Yahoo Yahoo! What a sound coming through the forest! :) We avoided not 1thunderstorm, but 2. The next day, they returned us to the trail with only food and water in our packs. We were going to slack pack 32miles, but got a late start as we realized it was the weekend and needed to pick up our mail drops or we would miss them. So, we opted for hanging out with the awesome aunts versus killing ourselves and did only 20miles instead of 32. That evening, we hung out in the pub for dinner and some music. It was alot of fun. I got up and got embarassed by not being able to sing. Then Spice Rack rescued me on a Beetles' song. I ditched him to sing his own song and relaxed with some more beer. It was a great night full of much needed fun. We met people working at a Farm for Dual Diagnosis people nearby and danced with them as well as chit chatted. I hope my aunts had fun because I know Spice Rack and I had a blast.
The next day was a rough one, but we saw some great sights. We climbed Killington Peak with our mostly empty packs and then left the Long Trail behind as we made our way to the VT 100 and hitched back to the Inn at the Long Trail to pick up our stuff and continue another 7miles. The last 7miles of the day were done in the dark and it was a straight up and down. We are heading back into the mountains. Luckily, when we reached the shelter there was nobody there and we made ourselves quite at home. The fun times were now behind us and we were hiking with a new bounce in our step, but very tiredly!
So, there has been trail life in a nutshell. I am currently in Hanover, NH. Just passed into New Hampshire today! What a feeling. Plan on spending a night in a hotel tonight and then back on the trail for a long couple of days before heading into North Woodstock on the 30th. From there, the plans go whacky, but should be fun. My plan is to meet up with my husband in less than 2weeks in Gorham, NH. Things are moving along and the anxiety is mounting for the end of the trip. I came to the relization yesterday I am ready to get back to work and my life in Colorado even though I heard they are having crazy heat issues. Yuck! Maybe I will go to Canada instead! Just kidding Mikey my love! I am looking forward to going back home with my husband. I told him I wasn't going to leave his side for about a week. He told me he could use some help at work! So, we will see what Colorado life holds in store for me. All I know is that I am ready for this to be done and looking forward to the White Mountains of New Hampshire!
Thank you everyone for your support and know that you are in my thoughts always. Take care and my love goes out to each and every one of you!