Just finished 11th day on the trail, just shy of 100 miles. Still only about 2000 more. Trying to convince myself that the uphills are getting a little bit easier. They say it takes 4-6 weeks to get your hiker legs. We’ll see. Pennsylvania is truly a walk in the woods, but when you get up high in the hills it gets VERY ROCKY.
Meeting lots of new people every day. Trail is a slice of humanity. Young(mainly), and old (like me), couples, single hikers, occasional doctor. Seems like people often find small groups of like minded hikers to spend time with for extended periods. This past week I’ve been hiking and camping with two guys my age. One, a retired air traffic controller and the other a professional forester. Both have extensive hiking experience which is good for me.
I’m starting this hike with a similar group of “flip floppers”. This means we are starting in the middle, headed to Maine, then coming back to the middle and heading south to Georgia. Flipp floppers usually start around this time of the year. The vast majority of hikers started back in Georgia in February and March. That big bubble of hikers will soon be catching up to us and passing us.
Thanks for everybody reading this blog. Always nice to hear comments and encouragement.
This spot is technically the exact middle of the At
Hiking through a tunnel of rodadendron trees
About quarter mile of hiking through a stretch called the “rock maze” up, down and through huge boulder field
Cheeseburger :I’m not starving!
Had to be sleep here
have Couldn’t sleep here
Still not starving
Hike through a big cornfield today
Tents drying out after a rainy night
Bye for now..
I’ve just finished 5 days “real hiking”, and still ready for more. It’s been a week of firsts.
Big decision each night is weather to stop at a Shelter which are big 3 sided cabins that will protect you from the rain. Tend to be many people there, sleeping side by side. I have diagnosed many new cases of sleep apnea and will be making appropriate referrals to Dr. E.
Other choice is to camp in the woods or campsites using your tent.
It’s been raining almost every day (and night).
One night I decided it was this for me to camp alone in the woods. Turned out it poured that night. I did stay warm and dry. However, about 2 AM I heard rumbling outside the tent. Checked outside and saw what appeared to be a large grizzly bear. Fortunately, had my albuterol inhaler. Two puffs of Proventil and he ran right back into the woods. No problem for w rest of the night. I did have to pack my tent and equipment in the rain to get started that morning. Sounds like fun right!
I would say 40% of the time I’m thinking this is really great. That is usually when there are great views and sights or waking through the woods on level ground. 50% of the time is usually up and down rather steep terrain, and I’m thinking “this is tough, but I’m pretty sure I can get better at this” 10% of the time, I’m thinking “what did I sing up for here!. Legs, knees, back and feet seem to be holding out so far. Main concern is stumbling or tripping on rocks with my pack of.
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Out of Maryland into Pennsylvania
Exploring Harpers Ferry with Stephanie for a day with a stay at this great bed and breakfast: Angler’s Inn. Great place for fly fishing but no time now.
Next morning it was raining fierce but finally let up around noon. I took off and made it to the first camp site about 6 miles later. Great view of the Potomac from up high. Brand new campsite that kept a 6 hikers at dry through some pretty heavy rains.
Entire morning was hiking through dense fog along a Mountain Ridge so it’s difficult to get any good views. By early afternoon sun came out and I’m here now at a nice campsite packing my tent for the first night.
Definitely taking my time but so far smooth sailing downhill and on the level. Going up the steep hills remains a challenge. Dr. Edmonds would be proud
Hope you enjoy some of the pictures below.
A view from high cliffs of the Potomac
First wildlife sighting.
Typing this blog right now. Forcast for rain tonight. Hope this tent works!
It’s been almost two weeks since “semi-retirement” . I’m putting the last finishing touches on my backpack. Thanks Karla, for the helpful advice. Also spending lots of time doing some short day hikes in local Cooperstown trails. I’ve had several send-off celebrations from family and friends as well as my coworkers at the hospital. It’s been great encouragement for me. Below are some pictures of some of these recent events. Also, some nice local hikes in the woods where I’m getting used to my pack and making sure at least some of my muscles are getting used to that upcoming hiking demands. Tomorrow I’m heading off with Stephanie to Harpers Ferry West Virginia via State College Pennsylvania for my planed send off on May 1st. Try my best to keep you all posted on upcoming hiking adventures.
Greatest Respiratory Therapists in the world!
This is is my first post on my Appalachian Trail Adventure blog. I’m thinking that today marks the official start on my glide path to a May 1st take off on the AT. Just returned from a great two week vacation. Week one was an expedition to the Galapagos Islands with Stephanie and many of our local Cooperstown friends. Week two was a great relaxing week in Florida with my sister Jane, Steve and Grandpa.
Beautiful Florida day
Yesterday was a nice hike up to Star Field in the snow. Much warmer today with a hike to the back trails of Clark Tower with Stephanie. It’s so nice to live in an area with lots of hills, which is great training for the AT
White blazing on the Clark Tower Trail. (NOT the AT !)
Here are some photos of recent hikes in the Cooperstown area. More to come.