Today marks my three month anniversary on the AT. It’s really hard for me to believe. In some ways it seems longer and in some ways it seems to have gone by in a flash.
It was a good move to sleep in the tent instead of the shelter last night. The mosquitoes couldn’t get me, it didn’t rain so my tent stayed dry, and I could start packing up early without feeling guilty about waking everybody up.
I got on the trail at 6:15 and it was a great day of hiking. Trail conditions were much better than the day before and the sun even made an early appearance (see photo).
I’m in a pretty remote area and only crossed two gravel roads all day. I did see a few other hikers going south but no thru-hikers. I decided to hike a longer day today in order to get into town earlier tomorrow so I ended up doing 28 miles. I’ll only have 10 miles to hike to get to Manchester Center tomorrow so I should have plenty of time to resupply, clean up and hang out at the hostel.
The highlight of the day was going over Stratton Mountain which has a ski resort. The mountain is little over 4000 feet high which is about the same as the Blue Ridge Mountains back home near Lexington. As I climbed up the mountain I got into a beautiful forest of spruce or firs that looked and smelled just like Christmas trees. It was wonderful. At the top I met an older couple who are members of the Green Mountain Club and work as caretakers. I’m not sure what they take care of because there’s not much up there. But they were very nice, asked me a few questions and said that there was going to be a storm tonight so I should get to the shelter quickly.
I headed down the mountain and set up my tent not far from the shelter. I’m doing what’s called ‘stealth camping’ which means I’m not at an official campsite, just a place in the woods with flat open ground to set up a tent.
I don’t have cell service so I can’t send this out until tomorrow morning. I’m looking forward to a ‘town day’ tomorrow!