Monday, August 30, 2010

LT Day 5

Secret Shelter - Inn at Long Trail (10.6)

It's 6am, i hear Heather's alarm go off. The plan is Long Trail by 3pm. Dustin and I are both skeptical of this plan, we've got a lot of climbing, many miles and time is against us. I decide i'm not carrying any more food so i cook up my extra dinner and breakfast and gave it to Wink.

I head off down the trail alone until Governor Clement shelter which was amazing. Stone fireplace and a HUGE overhang in the shelter, no wonder it's a great local party spot. While reading the register Inchworm screams past. I sit and wait for Wink and Clothespin, after they sign in and catch up on the people they'd been hiking with in the log we head off up the old washed out road.

(Governor Clement Shelter)

The trail deverts to the left and the climb begins. I quickly pull ahead and find myself alone for some time. I stop and listen for voices or trekking pole clicks forward or behind but hear nothing. I give up the fact that i will catch up with inchworm and i start taking breaks when i feel like it. I dunk my head in the first running stream i find and rend my shirt and go topless for the rest of the climb.

(They say Tree's Can Hear you, this one can)

I tell myself i can have a rest when i get to the Sherburn Pass Spur 2.7 miles up. But when i get there I'm feeling so good and since there is no were to stop i push on up Little Killington and get more sporatic views of Killinton ahead. I spot the tree monster to the left of the trail and it can only make me laugh.

I wonder if 5 days in the woods is too much, or perhaps because i get such joy from simply an uprooted tree, not long enough. Now i have yet to pick or get a trail name. Anonymity has been kind of neat out here on the trail. Since day one i had been keeping and eye out in the millions of clovers that line the trails. Today i found one, i squatted down and plucked a 4 leaf clover. Instantly giving me the trail name 4Leaf. Pleasantly happy with my find i tuck the clover into my camera pocket and with a big grin push on down the trail.

I catch up with Inchworm at the next platform where we wait for the other. We shed our packs again and climb up the steep rocky Spur to the top of Killington. The climb was a bear but the stunning views of Rutland, Pico and beyond made it worth while

(Traveler's 3, with Pico in the distance)

The trail heads down the west slope of Killington past the Cooper Lodge Shelter and along rolling terrain towards Pico. I catch up with Wink, and we chat a little. It's the first time we've really talked one on one. After brief stop at Jungle Junction and we decide we can make it to Mendon's lookout a mile down the trail for lunch by 1 if we hustle. While eating we feed Salene some of the lunch we don't want to eat or carry anymore and he gobbles it up. With the Long Trail Brewery on the horizon, it was all of the motivation we needed. Down the trail past the massive glacier placed rocks and into a fern gully. The trail was so beautifully smooth and rolling i actually ran a large section of it with a 40lb pack.

(Fern Gully Trail)

I catch up to Dustin about the time that a family approaches looking for a waterfall. We both scratch our heads and tell them we havn't seen a thing. I guess people like that are why NH now has the pay for your own rescue. I'm always amazed how people will just walk into the woods with one 22oz aluminum tin of water and expect to hike several miles with no map, no nothing. I laugh and ask how long you think before we see them coming back down the trail behind us. Just then we turn a corner and see the tiniest of people coming toward us. It's a little leprechaun woman. I wanted to grab her and see if she'd give me her pot of gold but she smelled of a thru hiker. I couldn't believe how tiny this woman was. I swore that she didn't need a sleeping bag, she simply could have climbed into her backpack and zipped it up.

The Trail head was shortly thereafter. It was a happy moment, but a sad one too. It was a great journey, and i knew my time was at and end. The mile walk up the hill to the truck was strange. it was the closest I'd been to vehicles in 5 days, and i didn't like it. Lucky for us, the truck fired right up, and by the time we got back to the lot everyone else had made it. We tossed in all of our gear and we're off to the brewery!!

Quote of the Day
"There's beer over that there mountain Josh"

1 comment:

leeapeea said...

Sounds like a great trek, 4Leaf. :-)