Leroy A. Smith Shelter, Penn., AT NOBO mile 1,269.4, Sunday May 4, 2014 — Zinc smelter in Palmerton operated from 1898 – 1980. The resulting pollution killed the vegetation on the ridge above town and contaminated the water.
Palmerton is a very hiker-friendly town but notable for having an inordinate number of lawyers, numerous medical facilities of various types and two funeral homes on main street alone. I know the rules about correlation and causation, but I’m just sayin’.
During our short visit we heard talk about cancer clusters. Sadly we saw evidence of obviously neurologically damaged people in town.
BUS (Big Ugly and Slow) is a mining engineer with a degree from the Colorado School of Mines. His observations were fascinating. He noted that the plant is operating albeit with new air scrubbers.
The climb up the Lehigh Gap was the biggest one in a long time, but pro forma after more than 1,200 miles.
I’ll let the pics tell the story.