Week 22: Almost to the End (But Not Quite)

The next time I write a post, I will have summited Katahdin. I will be Molly Bybee (or Training Wheels), 2016 NOBO thru hiker officiale. I can say obnoxious things like, “Oh remember when I hiked the WHOLE AT?” “I bet that isn’t as tough as hiking 2189.1 miles.” In other words, prepare for obnoxiousness. Not that that’s a whole lot different than before. Juuust kidding, I’m not obnoxious at all.

Last week I hit my lowest point on the trail. This week I crossed the difficulty hump that divides Southern from Northern Maine, hitting the 2,000 mile mark and hiking my last 4,000 footer until Katahdin. While my last week of hiking can’t be categorized as super easy hiking, scaling sides of mountains is a thing of the past. However, to prove that it hadn’t been beaten, the AT rained on me for two days following Rangely.

There has been so little rain that I’ve been spoiled. I wonder if in future years past thru hikers will talk about how 2016 wasn’t a real thru hike because we didn’t have the rain the AT is famous for but whatev…

However, you know what time it is?? Photo time!!


Great views


Even better views


I think I’m a little bitter about the rain/clouds/lack of views


Finally a view (Avery Peak, the last time I’ll be above 4,000 ft til Katahdin)


One thing can be said about Maine, there are a ton of toads! This one was an impressively big sucker.


Pierce Pond, a cool place to tent. A better place to take a cool tent pic.


Thankful for the views (so many clouds)


At last! A near perfect trail to hike. Look at the lack of rocks.


Ferry crossing


Jingle attempted to eat The Exterminator in Caratunk but failed. However, he did succeed in using his beard as a napkin.


He would also like to introduce Snarff, our new hiking loving friend (probably because Snarff joined at the end rather than hiking the whole way with us)

On a less triumphant note, I would like to take a moment and share that I lost someone important this morning. He was a big proponent in me attempting this hike, at one point telling me that if I wanted to do a full thru hike, just f***ing hike the whole thing. There will be time enough to worry about adulthood, but when else will I be able to step away for 6 months?? For me, it’s really put into perspective the finiteness of life. We’re here for such a short time. You don’t know how long you have with those in your life. You also don’t know how long you yourself will have. Make the most of your time. All cliches I know, but no less profound at this moment.

Finally I would like to send a huge thank you to everyone who sent me words of encouragement last week, the Mother yet another package, Auntie Elisa, Karen, Sara Lovegreen, Michaela, Alex and Aunt Robin for their cards/packages. You don’t know what they mean to me.

Farewell, the next time I speak to you I’ll be an official thru hiker.

Affiliate Disclosure

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.

Comments 6

  • Keith Marr : Aug 19th

    Molly, thanks for letting me hike a few days with you back in Georgia. I have enjoyed reading your blog’s. It would be really cool, if you could put all the blog’s together, as one short story. I’d like an autographed copy if you do.

  • Jennifer : Aug 19th

    You go right ahead and be obnoxious you have earned it. You are my hero. Way older than you and stuck working my life away but I dream about one day hiking the AT.

  • Karen : Aug 19th

    I will miss you and your posts!! Thank you for never giving up!!

  • Robert Barnes : Aug 19th

    Molly follow your post all the way up the trail. Thank you

  • Justin : Aug 20th

    Good luck on the rest of your hike.

  • Dee : Aug 21st

    Hi there! Did you meet “Fern”??? That’s my girl?
    Heading out today to Grafton Notch Me 26 to do Trail Magic today. Anything I should bring that hikers might need??? Congrats on finish in the AT! Dee


What Do You Think?