[at-l] stealth memories ... Re: 12th of never

hopeful_2003 at comcast.net hopeful_2003 at comcast.net
Mon Sep 6 23:35:48 CDT 2010

So, Hopeful, wuz you on der summit o' Garfield? 


No, I was down closer to the pond. As best I can recall, coming off Mt. LaFayette was very steep but once I was within in view of the pond, there was a level and wooded area off to my right. It was fairly easy to push my way through the small trees and when only about 30 feet from the AT, I was out of sight. There was dead fall, a lot of small limbs had to be removed off the ground so I could set my tent up, but at least I had a fairly clear view of the sky. 

>From my journal entry, 6 September, 2003: "...At Lonesome Pond Hut, Double Dare told me he was going into North Woodstock once we got down off the mountain. He offered no explanation and I asked no questions. I know the last two days have really taken a lot out of both of us. Maybe he just needs a zero before continuing north." 

"I'm camped alone tonight for the first time on my hike. [Actually, it was the second time] Odd, I really look forward to camp because of the socializing but I don't mind being alone tonight. There is a beautiful moon rising and the night wind is cold and gusty. It will be hard to get up tomorrow, but I must." 

"I'm actually camped illegally but it is a case of have-to. I guess I pushed too hard to get to the top of Franconia Ridge today. My left knee and right ankle are about shot. The climb was well worth the pain. Franconia Ridge is all I hoped it would be! By 9AM the sun ruled the clear blue sky and the air was cool and breezy. For 1800 miles I've dreamed of today and I was not disappointed." 

"We got our first view of Mt. Washington. Funny, it was the only mountain with clouds hanging on it. The cold wind kept us from staying too long on the ridge. We took many pictures and then marched on. By the time I got on top of Mt. LaFayette, my legs were about used up." 

"I fell way behind the group I was with because it hurt to walk too fast. I was almost down to Garfield Ridge when a young couple overtook me. Yet another God-sent!! The young woman is trained in sports medicine type stuff. She asked if she could help me because I was limping so. I asked if she would do anything she could." 

"First, she rewrapped the Ace bandage on my left knee and then she got out some tape and wrapped up my right ankle. My ankle felt better immediately. I walked less than a quarter mile when I noticed a passable camp spot. I opted to stop so I could rest my legs. I feel sure I'll be ok in the morning. It is better to stealth camp than to end up injured." 

"I covered 13 difficult miles today. I hope to do that many tomorrow. Maine is still 360 long miles away and winter comes early up here." 

7 September, 2003: "Galehead Hut.  I didn't cover 13 miles today. In 6 hours I covered less than 6 miles. My spirits are as low as I think they can get...... My legs are failing me. If I put on one more Ace bandage or duck tape I'll look like a mummy. In the early afternoon heavy clouds rolled in. I sat looking at the sky and was unable to muster enough will to hike on to the Zealand Hut."
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