Wed, Aug 14
The first of three 20ish mile back to back days, trail magic, and hiking with Tales.
I wake around 8 at the fairly crowded shelter area. Several tents are already packed up and gone. Breakfast at the shelter with Tales, Ridgerunner and Tumbledoor. The instant steel cut oats plus granola is a good combo. I pack up, filter water, and am one of the last out of camp. Big day ahead. Lots of up. I’m slowish in the AM.
Snack break at Congdon Shelter where Tales, Squeaks, Buttcheeks, and Faceplant are breaking too. Hike on. Quick break on Harmon Hill. Tales helps me up reserve a night at the Green Mountain Hostel for Friday night because my reception is bad in Vermont. Leapfrogging with Buttcheeks and Faceplant and Tales. Tales and I eventually start hiking together as we’re on the same pace and schedule. It feels good and familiar to be back on the Long Trail that I hiked with Andrea in 2016ish. It’s less swampy this time around, thankfully. Still muddy in spots though. Ol’ Vermud.
A steep descent to Route 9 with lots of stone steps. Greeted by trail magic at the bottom! 2 generous souls are sharing donuts and candy and Gatorade and water and fruit. I eat probably too much. Tales and I realize it’s 3pm, there’s 10 miles left to hike, and lots of uphill to tackle. Let’s go! We’re doing it! We blaze up the hill, fueled by donuts and sugar.
Water break at Hell Hollow. Small break at Little Pond Lookout. Finally the last uphill push to Goddard Shelter. Andrea and I stayed here on the LT after a soaking thunderstorm. Tales and I arrive around 7:30 or 8, fill water, eat food, and sleep in the shelter along with 4 others…