Goodbye NH; Hello Maine

It’s Official

June has been the rainiest month on record in New Hampshire. The four days covered in this post include three rain days and one cloudy overcast day. Day 75 saw me move into Maine with a hope for better weather.

I plan to return to New Hampshire, but in a car, and to drive to the top of Mount Washington on a clear day so I can see what I’ve been missing for the last couple of weeks.

The White Mountains were a challenge. The final climb before Maine is aptly named Mount Success. Congratulations to all hikers that have made it this far.

Some final pics from NH…

Day 73 – Pinkham Notch to Imp shelter (13 miles)

Day 74 – Imp shelter to Rt. 2 (8 miles)

Day 75 – Rt. 2 to Carlo Col shelter (17 miles) 

Day 76 – Carlo Col shelter to Speck Pond shelter (9 miles)

The Wildcats

The last big set of mountains in New Hampshire are known as the Wildcats and include several Peaks. Because of the rate of ascent, it’s recommended that they not be traversed in bad weather, but clear skies were not in the foreseeable forecast.

Photo credits to hiker NatGeo to provide some perspective.

And this formation known as the Guillotine.

Independence Day

…doesn’t really exist on the trail.  There are no picnics or fireworks; most hikers don’t know the day of the week, much less the date.

I was fortunate.  I hiked through Mahoosuc Notch on my 4th. The ‘Notch’ is known to be the most difficult and dangerous (fun) mile on the AT. Pictures won’t do it justice, but there’s a lot of boulder hopping, squeezing, and praying to get through. We completed the obstacles in a very respectable 80 minutes.

How are Your Feet?

How are my wh…?! Well, since you asked, my feet are fair. Hiker feet should not be taken for granted, and mine aren’t. Since starting the trail, I haven’t had a single blister; not one.

But, days and days of wet muddy shoes take their toll.  The mountain soil includes silica from the quartz stone, which is similar to microscopic glass. Despite how tough your feet have become, when your socks are muddy the friction becomes like sandpaper on your skin. See my small toe and heel.

These aren’t too bad; I’ve seen much worse. I’ve learned that in order to avoid those raw red areas, I need to stop at streams and rinse my socks when muddy, even though it may make them more wet. Eventually, they de-prune (un-prune?) at night.

And There’s This

Thanks for listening.

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