September 9: mile 1903: Gentian Pond Shelter

Sorry for the gap in writing.  I have been battling through the wilds of southern Maine with few opportunities for signal.  I’m zeroing today and will get everything up to date.

We left the hostel in three groups with myself, Dancing Bear and Dove leaving the earliest at about 8:00.  Stick, Gravity, and Tengo Hombre were not far behind us and the hobbits tend to get late starts.  The Wildcats were the hardest section on the trail and we now get to tackle the even harder Mahoosucs of southern Maine.  I’m a little apprehensive since the Whites almost killed us and the Wildcats were even harder– I don’t know how much harder I can take.

Luckily, the weather was good because the terrain was as advertised.  We contended with pretty steep climbs and descents with little reprieve in between.  The trail has almost as many rocks as in Pennsylvania.  Even worse are the snarls of tree roots that are slippery and ankle turning.  Both make for slow slogging regardless of the flats.  

After a full day of hard hiking we pulled into a high mountain shelter next to an alpine lake.  The views from the shelter were breathtaking.  Because the shelter was practically clinging to a mountain side, there were few tenting sites.  Tengo and were relegated to the shelter.  Also occupying were three generations of “Mainiacs” that had apparently found their way up there to party.  They had tons of booze and loudly played music consisting of CCR, Alman Brothers, and Lynard Skynrd.  And of course they brought their two hound dogs.  As the no doubt tick ridden dogs plopped down next to Tengo and myself, a female (I think) maniac declared:  “don’t worry, deys good dogs”.  Well, alrighty then.  Not much sleep was had.  Tomorrow we get the “toughest mile on the trail” the Mahoosuc Notch.  Happy trails.

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