AT Day 115 – Rain and Shine

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8th August 

18.9 miles

Bald Pate Lean-To (1924.9) to Bushcamp (1943.8)

The rain stopped at some time overnight but the tent was soaking wet when I packed it up. It might be a lightweight tent when dry but when it’s soaking wet, it’s like a brick. I’ll dry it out later in the day.

healthy breakfast
Healthy hiker breakfast, oats sprinkled with healthy grains and nuts from an Aussie dude living in Vermont

The trail climbed into alpine areas above the tree line. Swampy bogs, granite rocky outcrops and hardy shrubs survive here along with the extensive views. My first couple of days in Maine has been impressive but the trail has been brutally difficult. My mileage has slowed despite spending 12 or more hours hiking. I’m also seeing much less hikers. Everyone has their Trail legs, is hiking around the same speed and covering similar miles everyday. As I start hiking earlier than most hikers I’m usually alone.

rolling clouds
I spent an enjoyable 30 minutes watching the clouds roll in

The weather was changeable today. In the space of a couple of hours it was foggy, cloudy, sunny, still, windy, rainy and sunny. As much as I disliked the rain, it only lasted a couple of minutes before the sun would come out again.

Late in the day I started to consider my camping options. A cut on my foot needed some attention, so did a fast developing rash on my lower back from my backpacks waist strap. I thought of stopping near a stream close to a minor highway but a group of teenagers drinking alcoholic beverages forced me to climb up yet another of the super steep Maine mountains. I climbed less than a mile in one hour and settled for something mildly resembling a flat spot.

I tended to the rash on my back with vagisil and the cut on my foot with a broad spectrum antibiotic cream. Hopefully both will be better in the morning.

Next : Day 116 – Lakes and Mountains

All the best information on the Appalachian Trail:
Complete Guide to the Appalachian Trail
Appalachian Trail Gear List
Appalachian Trail Gear Review

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