Raven Rock Shelter, AT NOBO mile 1055.6, Friday April 18, 2014 — My mind is beginning to obsess. It’s starting to be about the rocks and we’re not even in Rocksylvania yet. The border is just five miles away so we’re almost there.
Just as Tarzan vines swung through my head, now it’s rocks. I’ve written two parody songs about hiking so far, and now a third one about rocks is working its way through my synapses. I’ll share a sampler of some random lines derived from Simon and Garfunkle’s “Sound of Silence.”
Hello rocks, my old friends,
I’ve come to hike on you again.
Beneath the halo of my head lap,
I turn my collar because you’re cold and damp.
The hikers bowed and prayed,
To the white blaze god they’d made.
And it echoed with the sound of hiker midnight.
We’ll see how it goes.
A two-time thru hiker who shuttled me back from my snow-aborted slack pack attempt in Buena Vista warned me about the Maryland rocks. He thought they were worse than Pennsylvania’s.
He was right about the trail being excessively rocky, but there is so much more of Pennsylvania. How could a state some people hike across in a single day beat big bad Pennsylvania at its own game?
Not buying it – yet. A Penn native and successful thru hiker named Karma told me that Pennsylvania wasn’t that bad. Best of all the rocks don’t extend to the whole state. She’s batted 1000 so far, so I’m sticking with her.
Tonight’s shelter is new and pretty awesome. I’d put it in the top three. It’s guests include a nice family from Delaware, and on the tent pads an amorous young couple and a solo older guy. All-in-all, good company.
Since last week the forest is really beginning to wake up. The May apples are exploding – that’s a tip of the hat to my friend Karma who wrote about them in her blog last year.