Day 17 LT – Stowe to Johnson

(belated post)

Stowe to Johnson today! Hotel to B&B! It’s a cush life… Our last town stop before we’re DONE WITH THE LONG TRAIL! Yippee!

Monday, July 6 – Day 17

Hiking down dirt roads past sugar maples and sugar lines
Hiking down dirt roads past sugar maples and sugar lines

We eat our free breakfast and check out of the motel. We hitch a ride from a woman named Gail who owns one of the sports stores downtown and knows someone who used to work at Phillips Exeter Academy (where Andrea works) – small world.

We’re on the trail around 9:15am and we begin with a steep ascent up to Elephant’s Head (a worthy view of Smuggler’s Notch) and to Sterling Pond. A sweet spot! We say hello to the caretaker next to the shelter. He enthusiastically¬†feeds us cookies – so excited to have spotted some LT thruhikers. Then up Madonna Peak where I sing Borderline, across ski trails, and to a Smuggler’s Notch ski lift. Up Morse Mountain, snack at Whiteface Lodge. I had my second epic fall of the trek – I slipped on a rock and my feet literally slipped out and up into the air before seemed to levitate in the air and fall smack onto my ass and pack. I’ll have a nice bruise.

Hay field!
Hay field!

Down to Bear Hollow. We call Nye’s B&B from there – we plan to stay there tonight and are calling for a ride. Down the fast trail from there, mostly on roads, past sugarlines, taps, log yards, and homes. Down a rail trail, across a hayfield, and by a cemetery. At last at Route 15! I call Nye’s and Marsha picks us up in her white convertible and drives us back to her most adorable and hospitable B&B.

At Nye’s they do our laundry, stuff dryer sheets into our stinky shoes, drive us into the tiny town of Jefferson where we get burgers and beer at the Village Tavern, and pick us up. I manage to thwack myself in the face with the car seat. Awesome. Shower. Sleep.

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