Day 91: NY, The Land of Mosquitos

Day 91, 7/28/23

Fort Montgomery to Canopus Beach Shelter

20.8 miles, mile 1,430.7

I got such a nice night’s sleep in the hotel last night I did not want to get up. My Starbucks espresso and cream drink hit the spot and I had some small omelets and yogurt for breakfast. We packed up and walked to the motel across the street and got a ride with the same nice man named Grandpa who gave us a ride yesterday. I had called him the night before and asked if we could hop in with other hikers that were heading back in the morning. Even though we weren’t staying at his place, he wouldn’t let me give him any money for the ride.

The hiking today was absolutely brutal. Never in my life have I hiked in such hot weather and experienced so many mosquitoes. The elevation was steep and rocky, and there was not a single view all day, which makes all the work I’m putting in feel pointless. They were biting me through my long sleeve shirt, and all over my legs. I had Sawyer Picardian lotion slathered which helped my legs a bit. It was so bad we couldn’t even stop to take a break and hiked the first seven miles as quick as the heat and elevation allowed to the Appalachian Market before taking our packs off. Kevin checked the weather on his phone and it said the “feels like” temp was 108 degrees Fahrenheit. I got a chocolate milk and a Gatorade and ate a bunch of snacks with some other hikers. All of us planned to get to the Canopus Beach Shelter, which is near a lake with a swimming area.

We continued on, and at around 2:00 p.m. I was starving, and we got to a road crossing with a sunny parking lot which meant we would be sweating immensely, but there wouldn’t be many mosquitoes. As I was eating, a woman who is thru-hiking with her husband supporting her (meaning she just has a day pack and he will meet her at the end of each day in their camper) came over to talk to us. She asked us where we were from and I told her New Boston, NH and she immediately was like, “No way! New Boston is my favorite place to visit.” Which really threw me off because it’s a small town that most people have never heard of. Apparently her college roommate lives only about ten minutes from my house. It was a total “small world” moment.

At this point we had six miles to go. The last half mile to the beach was the longest half mile of my life. I had been dripping sweat since 8:00 a.m. and my shirt, shorts, and bandana were soaked through. I immediately took my shoes off and got into the lake. It felt so good to wash the sweat away.

After the swim I went over to the water fountain to fill my water bottles and a bunch of other hikers were there too. The camping was 0.2 miles away from the beach, so I made my way over. Silly me thought the mosquitos wouldn’t be so bad in an open field. The second we put our packs down we were swarmed with arguably more mosquitos than we were in the woods. I have never set up my tent so fast. I managed to get a bite on my forehead, and on my ankles through my socks, along with all up my legs. Now they are all sitting on the mesh of my tent waiting for me to need to go to the bathroom. I am not looking forward to packing up in the morning.

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Comments 3

  • Jill Kinkade : Jul 28th

    I’m not a himer but I find these posts very interesting. Nothing bur admiration for these stalward folks.

  • Brian Garcia : Jul 29th

    As someone who lives in the Hudson Valley, where you are now, you guys definitely picked the wrong summer to hike through the area. The heat has been constant all July with super intense humidity. I work in the HVAC field so we have been pretty busy. We also have been getting rained on every day since July 4th, but the moment the rain stops, the humidity comes right back. And you’re right, the mosquitoes are out of control. They’ve never been this bad in my memory, maybe because of all the rain we’ve been getting, but I feel like they’ve been getting progressively worse since the summer of 2020. Good luck on your travels and stay safe. I love New Hampshire!

  • Carol Fielding : Aug 4th

    I was in that same section around the same time. Every local I met said they have never seen the mosquitoes as bad as this summer. I did exactly the same thing—set up my tent , got in, and didn’t get out til morning!


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