Lake Buel Road to Goose Pond Road. Massachusetts!

Betty in bug netting and me!

So. Three days in Mass with my friend Betty.

It’s night two and we did 6.1 miles in a lot of mud! Tons of rain up here but today was stunning! Cool air, warm sun, low humidity. Perfect.

We met a bunch of really nice thru hikers today. I didn’t realize there would be so many! It was perfect timing. All headed to Karahdin.

At this distance, they will probably finish. They have a different attitude than thru hikers in Georgia. The earlier ones we met were hopeful or determined. These hikers were pretty much just into a rhythm. Not really enjoying themselves. It’s acceptance, I guess.

It’s REALLY HARD to thru hike the AT. Really hard.

Mud Angel from Arkansas

He lost 90 lbs! Started the trail at 350.

Duckling from Indiana

Duckling was really nice, traveling with a tramily. Trail Family! She was not so relaxed out here, said her head was always filled. Thinking about what she had to do. For me, it’s just the opposite! Maybe she was just having a down day. Hope so.

Tuna from Baltimore. Just a quick chat over breakfast!

Patient Zero from New York

She just finished her student teaching in Elementary Education. She was such a spirited soul. Instantly likable. She was so real, right away. Love people like that! Genuine. Open and honest about who they are. We need more young ones like her. She will be a great teacher. If you’re reading this, good luck PZ.

Truck Stop from Maine

He nearly got crushed between two trucks at a truck stop. Broke 4 vertebrae and dislocated his hip, last year!

Reckless Abandon from Tampa

You meet the best people out here!!!

He can down a muddy hill and directly into a picnic table filled with hikers in front of a shelter. Ha.

Cajun we met on his first slack pack day since Springer! You should have seen his face! What a difference without the weight! He was meeting up with his mom later that day. She flew up from Louisiana for a day or two. His sister was coming as well from out west someplace!

And lastly, Quinn. He didn’t have a trail name yet. This was his first section. His pack was giving way to the weight he was carrying. He had a four person tent for just himself! Poor guy bumped his pot full of cooked noodles right down in the dirt!!! He was just 19. Such a nice kid. He was from Connecticut and his mom was meeting him day after tomorrow. Betty and I both gave him some bars to tide him over.

We think maybe Betty has her trail name. Quick Draw! Every time she wants to take a picture with her phone she reaches and reaches and takes forever to get it out!!! I usually just hand her mine…

So. Tomorrow, two climbs then across a ridge to Betty’s car. Down to my car that’s parked where we started and home. 4 miles, then 6.1 miles, and tomorrow, 7.1 miles. 17.2 total.

Mud. Mud. And more mud.

We didn’t push big miles on purpose. We’re both just working our way back from injuries and PT.

Next trip. 8.8 miles a day.

As always. A great time out here mostly because if the great people we meet.

Thanks Betty! See you Sunday for an Otter Hike. (Otter Hike. That will be a story for another time!)


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