Day five started out great. It was resupply day and Ma and Pa met us at Route 17 where the trail comes over the height of the land. In addition to the pre-sorted supplies, they also brought Italian sandwiches, Doritos, and Gatorade, which to us might as well have been a lobster dinner. Big thank you to them!
As we were loading our packs onto our backs to get going, we also got Brad’s quote of the day. The passengers in a passing car were gawking at us as they went by, prompting Brad to say, “What? Haven’t you seen two idiots before.” Truer words may never have been spoken.
Even though we had 13.5 miles on the docket for day five, it was looking to be a day of rejuvenation as we got to go for a swim in Long Pond. Unfortunately Mother Nature had other plans. With about a mile to go before camp, the skies opened up and we once again got drenched.
Meanwhile, back on the home front, my wife and son were without power due to a severe thunderstorm, so we were at least thankful that all we had gotten was rain. So far, anyway. Which brings us to day six…
Day six was a huge day for us. We had 15.5 miles planned, our longest yet, with the tail end covering Saddleback Mountain, one of Maine’s more majestic mountains at 4116 feet, as well as the other two peeks in this range, The Horn at 4041 and Saddleback Junior at 3655.
For the most part it was an enjoyable day, the sun was out and we once again felt like we were drying out. It wasn’t until we started climbing Saddleback Junior that we could hear thunder rumbling in the distance. We made the decision to press on and we were able to get over the summit before the storm hit. When the rain caught up to us we got our rain gear on and hunkered down in a gully waiting for the storm to pass. After about a half hour the lightning seemed far enough away to permit us to press on to the shelter and camp site.
In this story, the tortoise didn’t win the race. The lean-to was already full and the lower tent sites had already been taken, forcing us up onto higher ground. Soaking wet, we set the tent up as quick as we could and got inside. Neither of us had the desire to go back out in the rain, so dinner was beef jerky and a granola bar.
Late that night another thunder storm passed through. The rain was torrential and several lightening bolts crackled overhead. Experiencing a thunderstorm at 3000 feet while in a flimsy tent held erect by metal rods isn’t something I’d like to do again. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to being poo in my pants scared. I didn’t actually poo in my pants, mind you, it was just a distinct possibility.