High Contrast

Poplar Ridge Lean-to, ME, AT NOBO mile 1975.6, Sunday July 20, 2014 — Today is the 45th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing. Then, as Neil Armstrong became the first human to set foot on lunar soil, I watched along with the rest of my Ft. Benning, Ga. Infantry Officer Candidate School class from the position of parade rest in our company day room wearing only our skivvies. A black and white TV flickered history in the making.

Today I resumed hiking from Rangely. I’m typing this blog on an iPhone with more computational, photographic and communications capability than the entire Apollo program. I’m still in my skivvies tho, only this time I’m reclining in my sleeping bag with 205.7 miles remaining in my thru hike.

The sojourn off and return to the trail generated about the same level of contrast. I drove my car back to Maine to make returning home easier. The traffic and noise of NYC and the fine living in Kennebunkport are as far from what I’m doing now as one can get.

I thought about that when I retrieved and purified water from a spring this afternoon. Let’s see — genuine spring water with no extra charge for a fancy label… What a deal! Likewise as I pushed over Saddleback Mountain, The Horn and Saddleback Junior on my way to camp.

This afternoon the clouds were low and furtively dashing in between the peaks as light rain snare-drummed its tune on my pack. Why would I want to be doing anything else I thought while vividly daydreaming of on-demand hot showers and the purring of my cat Sophie as she lapnaps each evening. Hummm… It may be time to git this sucker done, don’t ya think?

I’m at a shelter cared for my the same guy who built it 57 years ago. He placed a fascinating monograph in the shelter. It’s chock full of history and answers to almost every question I have had drilling away in my head. Thanks Dave for all you have done for this trail and those of us who hike it.

Thanks also to Donna, my host yesterday. She and her friend Dave took me on a nice day hike to one of the more interesting area peaks. The three of us enjoyed a scrumptious dinner after which I slept like a rock. Best of all, the view from her deck overlooking Rangely lake is to die for. Could an itinerant hiker enjoy a warmer welcome. I think not.





Last stop before trail realityville.

Good info at the trailhead.






Fresh moose tracks



Traditional Maine “baseball bat” shelter floor.

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