10-19-07 from Guyot campsite just down from Mt Guyot. blue blaze .7+mile, SOBO mile: 356.9, 9 miles hiked today.
I do not know exactly the elevation here at Guyot Campsite shelter but much elevation was given up on my decent from the AT. Mt Guyot was at 4560' and here my 2000' climb ended. The blue blaze, Bondcliff trail, started out nicely then turned to a boulder bounce over slick rocks and finally steep stair steps. Quite a ways to travel for shelter in early afternoon. But with the possibility of rain at any moment, 5.5 miles to the next shelter, another 1500' decent, increasing winds and slick rocks I decided a few more hours in camp might do me some good.
The next 12+ miles will be along Franconia Ridge. I am 15+ miles from Franconia Notch/ I93/ US3 and will need to hitch or hike into town for resupply. The next shelter is 5.5 miles away and is 10+ miles to Franconia Notch. If it rains tomorrow then I will hike a short 5.5 (+ .7+ mile blue blaze) miles and hope that the weather forecast holds for clearing up Saturday and nice weather Sunday. If the plan occurs accordingly then I will get to hike more of Franconia Ridge in good weather. To see the views along this section would be worth the wait. I have hiked the ridge before and saw nothing further than the trail and cairns. Some say Franconia Ridge has some of the best scenery on the whole AT.
This is tough country and to be nursing a nagging ankle injury makes it slow going at times. I also consider that I am hiking solo out of thru-hiker season.
It was wet all day. Not from rain but from fog and drizzle and the water from trailside flora falling. All rocks were wet, bog planks slick and trails muddy and wet. The air was humid and I sweated all day.
More and more Canadian Jays, also known as Grey Jays, have been making themselves present. They love to watch you snack and will fly from locale to locale likely planning their best attack. I have seen these birds dive bomb and teamup on hikers. They still are pretty birds with lots of character.
This is a nice shelter with a great watersource and completely remote. Right now I am sitting on a bench used to climb up to the loft looking out the front into a sea of fog. I have no idea what is behind it but I love how it looks in the fir and spruce. It rained for five minutes earlier. Covering me are my dry system consisting of long johns, camp socks, shirt, stocking cap and down pullover. Warm and dry!
I am stiff and sore like no other trail sore. Calfs, Quads and Knees because of this tough hiking. But I love the hiking, the trail, the views, the challenges, the options and yes even this soreness because its' just weakness leaving my body. And a little rain or being wet never tends to be that much of a damper.
The new Merrells have been helping with tread but are running a little heavy. Heavy because they are wet, they are leather and because your author failed to apply nikwax or mink oil before wearing them out here in October. I got them literally on my way out of town and there was no time to think, or shop. Maybe, I'll use Blistex chapstick after the shoes dry? Naaa, then I would be out of chapstick.
My Granite Gear Nimbus Ozone has seen better days. i noticed a tear in the body of the pack. It was right along a stiching line of the lower part. The sidepcket has been covering the tear. I can not tell if the stitching just seperated or it is a tear in the body nylon. The other side pocket is majorly wasted. Rips vertically and horizontally finally met and now duct tape holds it in place along with the sidepocket strap. Various holes in fabric, destitching at seems and other minor issues stand in the way of this pack being 100%. However, this Nimbus Ozone still travels like a pro. With TLC, some duct tape and Krazy glue this pack will hold up for the rest of my miles.
I love Outdoor Research OR gear! Pack cover, dry stuff sack, gaitors and gloves. durable, logical and effective long lasting gear is the OR in my backpack.
Happy early Halloween!
Totally Different Subject