Everyone enjoyed a fine meal last night at Wild Wings restaurant (not Buffalo Wild Wings) in Johnson, Vermont. In addition to our group of backpackers we were joined by Toog’s mother Denise and her friend Martha and Jukebox’s parents Dave and Rhoda plus her younger brother Mark. Afterward we stopped at the grocery store for pints of Ben & Jerry’s which we took back to the B&B. The guys all piled into our room and did typical guy stuff including watching a bit of college football on TV. We were asleep by about 8:30 and slept well. In the morning we ate a big breakfast of blueberry pancakes with Vermont maple syrup (of course), eggs and sausage. Our hosts at the B&B were terrific and we’ll see them again tomorrow night when we make our second stop in town. I know it seems strange to stay out only two days between stops in town but because of the distance between places with access to roads we doing a two-day stretch followed by a four-day stretch rather than have to carry six days worth of food. A day’s worth of food weighs about two pounds and we don’t want to carry more than four days worth of food so that we can keep the weight of our packs reasonable.
Last night it rained hard and this morning it was wet and cloudy. We were lucky though and only got rained on once for about fifteen minutes. It was a light rain and the temperature was in the 70’s so we didn’t even bother putting on our rain jackets. It was really a very enjoyable day for hiking and the trail was excellent – it actually reminded me of our nice trails back home in Virginia. One big difference is that here in Vermont the trail is starting to be covered with bright yellow aspen leaves and red maple leaves.
The most interesting section of the trail today was Devil’s Gulch. Just the name Devil’s Gulch indicates a rocky and treacherous area. In Rockbridge County Virginia we have Devil’s Marbleyard and out in the Sierra foothills of California there is The Devil’s Playground. Devil’s Gulch in Vermont is just as much fun to hike. The students imagined that we were in Jurassic Park or deep in the rainforest.
Our pace was much quicker today, probably because our packs were a little lighter after leaving behind some unnecessary gear and clothing and also because the students are getting good at maneuvering around rocks, roots and other obstacles. We hiked nine miles and arrived at our destination, Corliss Camp at 1:30. Now everyone is journaling or reading poetry while I write this blog. Here are some photos from today.