Perhaps my favorite part of staying at Northern Outdoors, aside from the showers and flushable toilets, was when we were told that breakfast wasn’t served until 7 am. In other words, we were sleeping in, and yes, 6:30 constitutes sleeping in. Way in. Especially when a real bed is involved.
The only problem we had was that the shuttle back to the trail didn’t leave until nine. By eight o’clock there were five of us, all looking like we were either axe murderers or in a folk ban, trying to thumb for a ride. It didn’t go too well, though we got a couple on a motorcycle laughing pretty good. By eight fifteen the good people at Northern Outdoors realized that it wasn’t good for business to have a bunch of vagrants trying to hitch in front of the resort, and an employee came out who “happened” to be going our way.
Apropos of nothing, I wanted to mention that the outhouses are called “privies” out here. I refuse to fall in line on this one. Privy is too quaint sounding of a word for the stark reality.
All in all, today was an enjoyable day of hiking. We covered fifteen miles, which included Pleasant Pond Mountain. On the way in we passes a couple that were SoBo through hikers. They told us that we were in store for a big hike. At 2477 feet, Pleasant Mountain looks like a speed bump on the map compared to the mountains we’ve already covered. The couple looked to be struggling a bit and I didn’t have the heart to tell them what they had coming. They’ll find out soon enough.
All this said, the climb up Pleasant was rougher than we anticipated. There was a thousand feet of elevation gain in just a mile and the terrain was rocky with a myriad of exposed roots. Once we got to the top the climb back down was relatively gradual and we had smooth sailing for the rest of the day.
The one negative from today is that I lost one of my Crocs. I’m really bummed about this because it makes it difficult for me to air out my feet, which is essential trail maintenance. On the other hand, I’m thinking it might earn me a new trail name: Half Crocked.
On a positive note, we began the day with 151.5 miles until Katahdin. Our fifteen miles today has pushed us over the half-way mark. Granted, our mile count is laughable for the NoBos (in a strange twist, we’ve now logged more miles than any SoBos that we’ll meet from here on out), but it’s still a lot to us.
Nobody fell today. The current slip-and-slide score is tied at nine.