Full Goose Shelter, ME, AT NOBO mile 1,908.4, Tuesday July 1, 2014 — This is the beginning of the end. Each mountain top witnessed the ever fading shadow of Mt. Washington shrinking in the haze of my rearview mirror. By day’s end it was gone – history in the books.
What lies ahead is less romance than hard work. The trail in Maine is rough. Everyone at the shelter is complaining about the steep slab rocks on the downhills. They’re slicker than snot when dry. We can’t even contemplate them wet. We’ve all fallen enough that we’re gun shy on wet rock.
Lots of fancy trail structures in evidence today.
Tomorrow is Mahoosuc Notch and arm, reputed to be either the most fun or most challenging couple of miles on the trail. In anticipation, I’m working on my war stories early. My mind is open. Let the end games begin.
6 thoughts on “Maine! The final exam.”
Wow! Those ladders are something. Melanie and I disagreed on which would be the easiest to climb. Those were really good pictures.
I’ll take the rebar anytime. It’s much more stable.
Jim and I had interesting different reactions to the ladders. He saw the metal rungs and didn’t like the looks. I thought they were okay, but the first log ladder flipped my stomach a little as I looked at it. Sort of a phobia for me — wooden structures that will fall apart. Intellect and instinct don’t always line up!
Thanks for the views, though. Enjoyed it.
I prefer the rebar. It’s far less precarious than the Jacob’s ladders. Wood also is slippery. You have to respect all the work the volunteers have done to build that much complex infrastructure.
Okay, so I have to ask. With the end being near, how do you feel? Are you so burnt out and exhausted that you’re relieved? As in, “Hurray, I met my goal, now I can move on with my life!” –?? Or do you feel somewhat sad, like you’re having to say goodbye to an old friend (the trail)?
It’s mixed. The trail conditions here are rough. Ten miles is a good day, so it’s slow going. That leads to a level of frustration because it’s time for this slog to end. On the other hand, in some ways, I’m just beginning to appreciate what a unique opportunity this has been. That part I wish would never end.