Hello Rocksylvania- you got our attention!!
Day 72-78. week 11
Last time I checked in, my mouth was still numb from the ice cream challenge! My thoughts of late were obsessing on trail rumors. Specifically why do they call this area Rocksylvania? Seems pretty genteel to me- even easy. Time to bust miles with this easy terrain! Oh boy, if you’re at all superstitious I just blundered and challenged the trail gods big time! We finished ice cream day energized from the rich goodness of ice cream and a hiker burger to wash it down with a 25+ mile day !
We’re Neroed after 15 miles in Carlisle. Warm beds and hot showers were much appreciated!! As a tramily, we often go to a hotel, it’s just as economical as a hostel if there are four of us! A bit more privacy and a place to dump an ice bag for a good foot chill down!
Day 73 &74
We turned in some big miles and started not to wonder about the rocks! We found them and they are real ! We hiked 29.3 and 31.4 miles despite the rocks. I’m going to try to accurately describe the rocks: 2 types essentially- boulder fields and ragged stream beds. Boulder fields are large irregular rocks where you step up or down from one to another- they can go up and down- they take concentration and balance. Personally, I love them! Ragged stream beds, these plain out suck, they are notorious feet eaters- they cause pain and discomfort no matter where you step. As the day wears on I end up kicking them when I think my foot has cleared the top. Lots of ouches and colorful language has been used! Oh hello black nail- where’d you come from?!?
We headed into Port Clinton for another Nero after 28.5, at this point we enjoyed town but lost track what a Nero actually was! From this day forward we found the NOBO terrain very rocky and unrelenting! Our brisk 3 – 3 1/2 mph pace was non existent! The rocks dictated our day length and stubbornly we dictated our mileage! Our victory came in the early morning when we eclipsed the 1,200 mile mark and now we would start our count down from 999 to Kathadin!! This monumentus day concluded with some creative shuttling and reunion with a wonderful friend and colleague Greg Nichols. Who brought us trail magic, helped us resupply, catch up, enjoy a relaxing dinner and bunked with us and got us rolling in the AM. Thanks buddy – you’re awesome!!
Day 76 & 77
We continued our rock hoping another 39. 7 miles on tender feet but progressing nonetheless!!
We ascended out of Palmerton perhaps the most technically advanced rock section thus far! It’s a challenging stretch but a steady rain kept us cool and super focused. In all honesty- this was my favorite part of Pennsylvania so far! We concluded the day with 20.5 miles into Windy gap to be picked up by Eric & Christine, trail angels and new friends that showed us amazing hospitality and a super home cooked meal! Thank you – thank you!!
With a short off trail trip home to celebrate our daughter Haley’s hard earned masters degree and some much needed family time – a renewed and invigorated Catmando 2.0 will emerge to catch my Tramily in New England! (the best trail tramily ever!) stay tuned…..
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Good seeing you in Fla. on Wednesday!! Keep on hiking and keep your eyes open! Thanks for all you do!
Will be waiting for your updates when you start out again. Congratulations to your daughter and say hello to Denise. Enoy the rest.