Shakedown Numero Dos
24.3 miles from North Adams, MA to Dalton, MA. The final shakedown before Maine. What did I learn? Trail life.
Wes, Hillary and their black lab Salem reside at the base of the Williamstown. They have for 8 years. The AT literally goes up their driveway. What do they do about it? Garden. With SMILES. As well as mingling with the Hykerz. #RealTrailAngels
The trail took me up through North Adams and up Mt. Greylock. As the highest point in Massachusetts, it’s a climb. Little ‘ol me made this mountain my beach. (Sp?)
I saw this shack, with snow-covered pond on the Real Hiking Viking Snapchat. Totally stoked I recognized it. It’s like I’m famous or something now.
Meet Albert. The nicest 2005 Thru-Hiker I know. After his 10 year hiatus from hiking he spent his first night back in the “wilderness” next to me on my third. Do you know how to bear bag? The PCT method? Albert does. He’ll show you, for snacks.
But this is my snack. A super tasty, 400 calorie snack mind you. Not for Albert, just for me.
They call me Dirt. I chose not to ask the origin of the name, although I imagine it’s just as rad as his ska-tactic hiking shirt. As kind and supportive as this soft-spoken 2016 Northbound was, I have walked away from, dripping with envy. And also sweat.
And then the OTHER 2016 Northbound I stumbled upon. I saw them teleport 100 yards down the trail the second I turned away. Seriously. They’re cheating and using magic to crush miles. HoHo and Trickery. Be forewarned. I’m onto you.
This is Chan. Short for Chandler (like in the show Friends?!) He loves GPS, Cell Phones and Ham radio. At the age of 68 and in remission, I saw he’s earned it. His wife Hillary (also know as “Mass Backwards” or “Halfstick”) would much rather a map. And she’s not afraid to say it. A 12 mile day hike for them isn’t a problem at their age and it’s only one of many for them. I’m running out of excuses for sub-15-mile-days.
I ended my last night on the trail in my Tarptent Protrail. And although I paid full price for it ($209, UGH), it made it through the night. More importantly, I figured out how to set it up.
Tomorrow AM, 6:00 start to get to Dalton, MA by 9:00. It’s 4 miles, downhill, but I’m still gonna have to truck it, if I want to get Breakfast as a smelly hiker for the first time.
P.S. To the stoners that I gave my M&Ms to, you can get to VT! Keep pushing! Or smoking! Whatever works for ya!
Posted from the Trail in Lanesboro, MA.
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