Appalacian Trail - Day 5 - 8/23/12
Happy Hill Shelter - Velvet Rocks Shelter - Parking Lot (9.5 Miles)
Leah - "did you hear the coyotes last night?"
Me - "yeah, why?"
Leah - "it scared the shit out of me. The material on this tent isn't that thick."
Me - "seriously? there's a dude over there just in a sleeping bag next to a giant pickle"
and this is how sketch's nickname became "reuben"
We zip out of camp as quickly as possible in hopes to not interact with the ATers. Dustin, lula and i take the lead and power down the few remaining hills towards Norwich. The girls chatting away a turn or two behind us on the switchbacks. It's funny. The thought of beer, non-space food, a shower and a bed has increased our pace from 1-2 miles an hour to 2-4.
Norwich is hopping with construction, traffic, and people. It's a HUGE differnce from the woods. The pace is blistering compaired to how we've lived our life for the last week. Something I had called “life simplified.” Which consisted of simply getting up, walking, eating, and sleeping.
We pause briefly on the VT/NH line for a couple of photos and then climb up to the Dartmouth green. On the green we're approached by a fella asking if we are renting packs. What the hell? I was amazed that he couldn't smell the week worth of stink on us.
Dustin and I leave the girls and start "slack packing" up and over the velvet rocks. We laugh about how easy this is. After carrying a 50lb pack for 5 days. Walking with just ourselves was amazing. We pause a few times to try to catch a photo of a pialated woodpecker and a view or two, but similar to Lucia Lake the scrub brush had grown up over the summer and not much was around.
At one point the trail is so steep that there is a rope to climb it. I comment that I can’t imagine doing this in the rain with our pack on. We cross a wooden bridge i assume that was similar to the bridge that was washed out back at the ottawaqueece a few days earlier.
We quickly knock out the remaining miles and reach the truckster. Before we know it we’re picking up the girls and head for the grocery store. Pizza, beer, bbq chicken and a shower is just a few miles away! The PackCow is very pleased to be knocking out the miles without having to walk.
As much as we enjoyed out time on the trail, we were ready to be off of it for now. It didn’t take too long for my hiking amnesia to kick in though. As I’m writing this blog post a week or two later, the trail is already calling me back and I’m planning my thru-hike of 2013. I can only hope the weather and the trails are as beautiful as they were this year.
QOTD – “Hey Buddy! Your daughter is a whore!”