The Hits Keep Coming

June 6, 2008  Blue Mtn. Lakes Road to Delaware Water Gap, PA    (17.8 miles)
Today I shuttled north into NJ and slack packed south.  The weather  was overcast and cool, and I was carrying a very light pack.  It was a  terrific hiking day!  I met some of my northbound friends and swapped hiking stories.  “Crow” is a young man who attends the University of  Alaska and carries a small guitar with his pack.  He entertains the shelters with after dinner music.  “New Day” and “Be Rad” are a mother  and son who are trying to finish a thru-hike they started last year.  I must try to make more photos of my fellow hikers.  I did see my first bear today.  I was still in the car when I saw a bear cub in the road.  It scooted off into the woods very quickly!  I never saw its mother.  Tomorrow I’ll shuttle out again and hike north with a heavy pack.  Temperature is predicted to hit 95 degrees the next 3 days. That may really affect hikers!

June 7, 2008    Blue Mtn Lakes Road to Gren Anderson Shelter (13.6 miles)
The heat became really oppressive today. I covered most of my mileage in the morning hours.  By 11am, I took the first of 3 breaks of 45 to 60 minutes for rest and hydration.  I was really glad to get to the shelter at day’s end.  I  plan to be up early to hike in the cool of the morning.  If the heat  persists, it’s definitely going to affect my daily mileage!

June 8, 2008    Gren Anderson Shelter to “Secret Shelter” on Murray 
Property    (18.3 miles)
Today was very hot, into the hight 90’s.  I started early and did 13 miles before 1pm.  I stopped at High Point  State Park for an hour to rest and hydrate.  I decided to do another 6 miles and arrived at a private shelter maintained by a well-to-do former thru-hiker for use only by thru-hikers.  It was definitely a lot nicer than most shelters.  I think tomorrow’s hike will be shorter.  Hot weather is predicted to continue.

June 9, 2008    “Secret Shelter” on Murray Property to NJ 94 (near 
Vernon, NJ)    (13.6 miles)
Today was another hot one with high heat (95 degrees) and humidity. The early start helped by 11am I was hot and tired.  I was helped through the day by Trail Angels, only one of whom I met.  The first man stopped his van and gave me 2 cold Snapples which I drank while he was there.  He was transporting “Memphis Tim” back to the trail.  Tim had been ill and off the trail for a few days.  Later I came across an ice chest of cold cokes left for hikers, and still later was directed to water when I was almost out. I believe that my prayers and those of my friends and relatives are being answered. Tonight I am in a church hostel in Vernon, NJ and it is air conditioned!  Elaine is meeting me at Fort Montgomery, NJ later this week.

June 10, 2008    NJ 94 near Vernon, NJ to NY 17A near Greenwood Lake, NY     
Today was very hot.  I had hoped to do a few more miles, but realized by 4pm that I needed to stop.  I ran out of water once, but came across a stream shortly thereafter.  The trail had lots of rock 
climbing today.  I called a local motel (Anton’s on the Lake) and arranged a room.  The owners could not have been more accommodating. They directed me to “The Creamery” just off the AT where They featured home-made ice cream and came to pick me up.  After a shower, we (Tom and me) had dinner at the local marina restaurant, a good way to end a long, hot day.  Tomorrow I’m going to slack pack about 18 miles.  The motel owner is shuttling Tom, a young man who just finished college, and me.  I finished NJ today, my eighth state.

June 11, 2008    NY17A near Greenwood Lake NY to Arden Valley Road near Lake Tiorati Circle   (17.5 miles)
Today was a good day to slack pack. The terrain was steep and there  were multiple difficult rock climbs.  Carrying a light pack made the day earier. Today’s beauty spot was Fitzgerald Falls which I photographed.  The hike took longer than I expected because of multiple long climbs.  At the end of the day, the motel owners picked  us up and took us back to “The Creamery” where the milkshakes are  delicious!  After a shower, we had dinner at the Marina Restaurant.  Tomorrow I’ll carry the heavy pack to Fort Montgomery, NY where Elaine will meet me.

June 12, 2008    Arden Valley Road near Tiorati Circle to Bear Mtn. 
Bridge near Fort Montgomery, NY  (13.1 miles)
Today’s hike was not as long or as strenuous as yesterday’s, even with the heavy pack.  Yesterday was definitely a good day to slack pack!  Today’s high light was a group of high school students from the Bronx, NY who were out on a 3 day hike.  They had studied the AT and knew how long it was.  They were so interested in meeting a thru-hiker that for a few minutes I felt like a rock star.  I’m now settled in my hotel  room.  Elaine arrives tomorrow.


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