Fort Montgomery, NY to Williamstown, MA
Day 84(June 30th)25 miles to RPH shelter. Outrunning the rain most of the day. Too tired to write anymore…
Did a 19.9 mile day to the Native Landscapes and garden center. They allow tenting on their facility. It really is a nice place, but I am literally sandwiched between a major roadway, a railway that is very active and a swamp. Don’t know how much sleep I will get.
Two delis were attended today.
One for a phenomenal breakfast sandwich and one for drinks in the evening.
New York really has been just deli hopping. Getting into Connecticut tomorrow which is another state I have never been.
Day 86(July 2nd)
Did an 18.4 mile day to Kent, CT.
Camping behind a woman’s clothing store that does not advertise that they offer this, but when we called around, this was suggested. Such a great spot. Ice cold shower and a towel. Sweet little town as well. Not real hiker friendly when it comes to accommodations or gear needs but a pizza place that is phenomenal. We(Miles, Poboy, Rockboat, Jeapordy and myself) rolled in there, ordered 5 large pizzas and were promoted to join in on trivia night. Bit of an understatement to say that we won. We beat the 2nd place by 4.8 times their score. My clutch answer of knowing who Charlie XCX was from a photo and the hit song “I Love It” put us on a roll for the rest of the game. That damn song is catchy and got put on my hiker spotify playlist after hearing it on the show Girls.
Damn fine way to end the day. Sleeping with pizza in my tent may attract ants, but I shall deal with that if it arrises.
Surprise zero day today. Got a bit of a late start with the lack of sleep the night before. We all took to the coffee shop to charge our devices and enjoy some fantastic coffee. The cafe breve was life changing after shitty instant coffee all trail.
This town really is perfect for hikers. The townsfolk have been great for the most part. Lots of stares from people walking around town, but all in all, it has been a good zero day. Pizza place in town was exceptional and fed all of us well again. I really do feel that I am in the hiker bubble in that there seems to be loads of people all the time. Not sure if it is a bad thing or not. Great that so many people have not dropped out, but the crowded factor at this unmarked place in town is a weird sign.
The people around me are who are going to get me the 700+ miles to Maine.
Definitely noticing a difference in my mental state when hiking around people and meeting them at lunch and dinner and then at the final shelter.
Such a dichotomy of the first and second half of the day. Rained all the way until 3pm. Thought it would ruin the 4th for me. But the second half of the day really turned it around. Rumors were going around about some great trail magic happening in Falls Village. Barn party with food and tenting is all that was needed to put our asses in gear. We did 23 miles by 5pm. We could hear and see limerock racetrack from the mountain before town. We didn’t know at first that tenting would be offered, so just going into town without a plan was a risk. Saw some guys I haven’t see since NJ like Peacedog and Turbo. Got let in for free to the racetrack for a proper view of the fireworks. Walking 1490.1 miles
and somehow ending up here on the 4th is a crazy happenstance.
Did a major day of 23.4 miles to the glen brook shelter. Even with taking a 2 hour break for brunch in Salisbury, CT. Had a great breakfast burrito, chugged a quart of chocolate milk and set out for another 13 miles after noon. Had some of the toughest climbs since the smokies today all in the second half of the day. Getting past mile 1500 and crossing into Massachusetts was a big motivator to push past some mental barriers and fatigue we have all been feeling. Very large group of Boy Scouts at this camp and hopefully they know some hiker etiquette of quiet hours.
Another dichotomy of a day. Started out quite peaceful with the brook running through the shelter and sleeping in. Then it turned into an all out assault by Mosquitos. 8.8 miles of all out running to avoid being swarmed by the bastards. Never in my life have I experienced such swarming. Even the 100% deet did not stop them. Putting down the pack to filter water was terrifying. Miles had the great idea to go into Great Barrington, MA to just take the rest of the day off. Haven’t been in a hotel since Fort Montgomery, NY. I smelled and felt like death. His Marriot points got us a room in town and I feel like a new person. Laundry and feeling dry is an under appreciated experience.
Anyways. Dinner at a brewery and hot Tubbin’ like champs.
Got the easiest hitch ever out of Great Barrington. Saved us cab fare or 4 miles of walking. The rest of the day turned out to be total shit. Just solid rain from 11AM to 5:30 PM. I have never been more soaked on the trail until today. Most of the path was boggy and swampy and unavoidable to be stepped in. Just glad it quit so I was able to set up my tent here at the Upper Goose Pond cabin. Great place with a caretaker that is only .5 off trail. Dock with canoes and just so damn pleasant. The day ended as nice as it began in town.
Day 92(July 8th)
Did a 24.8 mile day to the crystal mountain campsite. Quite an easy day given that I started at 7am and ended at 7pm with 2 hours of breaks in there. I even stopped in Dalton, MA at Jacobs tavern for a Reuben and beer.
I am convinced that MA is basically a swamp masquerading as a trail. There was more bog board than walkable trail today. Mud and grime just wrecking my new-ish shoes. Good news is though that MA is almost done with. Getting into Vermont on Friday and going into my last
Town in MA tomorrow. Got a room with Lightning, Pork Chop and Miles. I met lighting back in the smokies at mile 189.9 and his pace has been pretty simpatico with mine. Pork Chop was doing a work for stay at woods hole hostel back in VA. Lighting is from Atlanta and we know some of the same people and Pork Chop is from Asheville so sensibilities about rural America are roughly the same in this group. We have the opportunity to have town food for 3 meals tomorrow and by god, it shall be done.
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