[at-l] Whites, trail magic

RockDancer rockdancer97 at comcast.net
Wed Aug 18 11:31:56 CDT 2010

At least 30 hikers came by Crawford Notch in a 48-hour period from Sunday to Tuesday, every single one is a northbound hiker. The southbounders must be nearly through the Whites and the surge of NoBos are here. M&M, past thruhiker & current trail angel, stopped by for a visit.

This was my 8th trip to Crawford Notch this summer, for a total of 19 days of magic. This week funds for food & drinks were provided by 2 thruhikers from year 2000. They wanted to do something nice for the hikers this year but they live in Florida. Turns out you can make a hiker pretty happy for about $1.50 - sandwiches, lil Debbie snacks, fruit & drinks.

The stealth camp site in the Notch has been getting good use this year, more than in the past. This is partly due to the private campground no longer offering a bunkhouse for AT hikers. Several hikers just wanted to get to a motel, even after only doing the 8 miles from Zealand. Some of the older hikers are telling me they are tired.

Chopstix is an unusual hiker. He's spent 5 days and nights at Crawford Notch doing all the sidetrails and then doing trail-less ascents to cliff faces and crossing scree slopes. He's absorbed a huge amount of White Mountain lore, mostly through his contact with Matt, the caretaker at Ethan Pond. 

Next Tuesday 8/24 the two will attempt the Hut Traverse - 56 miles from Carter Notch Hut to Lonesome Lake Hut, including the ascent over Mt. Wildcat. This "Big Day" hike also includes over 20,000 feet of ascent. When this was first achieved, in 1936 by Herbert Malcolm, it took 21 hours, 43 mins. (according to Waterman's "Forest & Crag"). I don't know the current record but Chopstix and Matt hope to finish under 14 hours, with the hut croos notified and offering support along the way.

Tour Guide
Fernlover & Hopalong
Chopstix <see www.joegrubb.org for his Hike for Hope organization>
The Wizard
Kumquat (with a surprise meetup with her parents. Mmm, watermelon!)
Hot Foot
Strider (There's one every year I guess!)
San Gabriel (finishing the Triple Crown, with Voyageur visiting)
Trinket & Orlando

RockDancer (Arthur Gaudet)
Rockdancer97 at comcast.net
"The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true."

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