Sister Reunion In Duncannon And Upcoming Flip To Baxter State Park
My Sisters Meet Me In Duncannon
Knowing it was going to be brutally hot and humid, I was on the trail to hike into Duncannon about 6:45 a.m. The hike was easy until the rocks south of Duncannon. Although more than halfway on the AT, the town boasts of being in the middle of the trail, noting that it passes through the streets of Duncannon for several miles.
In Duncannon, the sun was blazing hot and there was no shade. I stopped at the Church Along the Way Hostel, where I left my pack while I continued the hike through town. I walked on the bridge over the Juniata River and the Clarks Ferry Bridge (yes, before the bridge was constructed, there was a ferry) over the Susquehanna River to the trailhead parking lot near the train crossing. Below is a photo of the bridge over the Juniata River from the Clarks Ferry Bridge.
Then we checked in at the Red Carpet Inn and drove to the trailhead at Clarks Valley Road so they would know where to meet me the next day. While there, Mosey arrived, and we all went for a quick dip in a cold, refreshing swimming hole.
It was wonderful to see Mosey on my second to last day hiking north. I will miss leapfrogging with her.
Slack Packing To Clarks Valley Road
The next day Susan, Leslie, and I headed toward the railroad crossing beyond the Clarks Ferry Bridge. Wouldn’t you know it, a train came through just as we reached the crossing and stopped, blocking the trail!
We walked behind the last few cars and started the ascent, admiring the rocks snd the views.
We also admired some wildflowers, including the delicate rock harlequin pictured below, spotted by Leslie, which I hadn’t seen in quite a long time.
Returning to the car, they found an ice cream stand before driving to Clarks Valley Road to offer trail magic until I arrived. They had fun talking to hikers as they handed out Cokes, Leslie’s applesauce chocolate chip muffins, cutie oranges, and snack bars.
In the meantime, I received trail magic at Peters Mountain Road, including banana bread, a banana, and water. The ridge line walk offered a few more views. After passing Peters Mountain Shelter, I descended to Clarks Valley Road, singing joyfully. It struck me how fitting it was that my sisters were with me on my last northbound miles.
That night we stayed at the Fairfield Inn near Swarta Gap and ate delicious fish tacos at the Snitz Restaurant. The next morning, I ate my first breakfast with PBJ, talked with Secret Sauce, and ate a second breakfast with my sisters. I won’t see my NOBO friends again until we meet as I hike south.
Flip To Baxter State Park
All along, I have planned to flip north to Baxter State Park in the third week of July. I have my flight reservation from LaGuardia Airport to Bangor, ME, my reservation at the AT Lodge and Hostel in Millinocket, and my campsite reservation at Katahdin Stream Campground. When my sisters arrived, I decided to take a few extra zeros, and travel north with them, staying two nights with friends in NJ, and one night with friends in Manhattan, as planned.
Although I went for a 3-mile walk this morning, I haven’t hiked in 3 days. My body is in shock with this unexpected inactivity. I feel exhausted and have napped as often as is polite. I still have a tremendous appetite, the balls of my feet are still numb, and my left knee meniscus is still tweaky. How did I ever manage to hike 14 to 18 miles a day? I hope that this rest will replenish my energy. Katahdin, here I come.
This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek's ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!
To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.