I've been a backpacker for more than a decade, but my first thru-hike was the Colorado Trail in 2019. It was amazing! Since then I hiked the South Dakota Centennial Trail and attempted the Uinta Highline Trail. This summer I am hiking the Appalachian trail northbound, starting in the first half of April. Excited to spend months in the woods, find a trail family, and explore the eastern United States!
I intended to write a reflections post, yet over a week went by and I wasn’t called to do so. Now I am camping, albeit with my car, and it feels right.
Then I was at the end of the Appalachian Trail and on the highest summit in Maine. It felt a little unreal to be at the end of such an epic journey.
Shortly after hiking three miles to a paved road crossing, we entered the 100 mile wilderness. A sign warned us “this is the longest wilderness section of the enter AT and its difficulty should not be underestimated”.
Today confirmed that Maine is my favorite state of the trail. We hiked over Bigelow Mountain’s West and Avery Peaks, the last time we will be over 4,000 ft. until Katahdin. The climb took us into the alpine zone and along a ridge with fantastic views.
As we descended, Serendipity and I came across a multitude of blueberry bushes. We stopped to graze; some of the berries were huge!
The Mahoosuc Notch is famed to be the hardest mile on the trail. It took Serendipity and I an hour and 45 minutes to traverse.
I woke to mostly blue skies and sunshine. It looked like a great day to summit Mt. Washington!
After several hours, we reached Franconia Ridge. It was amazing!! The ridge is 2.5 miles in length, all above treeline, with majestic sweeping views in every direction. It immediately became my favorite section of trail to date.
I enjoyed climbing the north and south peaks of Moose Mountain. What a great name for a mountain!
The 1700 mile marker made an appearance. I started “Return of the King” then took a break as it rained lightly for a bit.