Hiking Trail Journals
Appalachian Trail 2003 -
Entry #109 - August 6, 2003
8:25 PM - After we left Sages Ravine, we pretty
much cruised. We got a later start, and were supposed to meet Semi
@ 4:00 @ the outfitter in Great Barrington. Having to hike fast
to get somewhere @ a certain time really bugs me, but we tried
our best. (Man, this new pen sucks!!!) About a half-mile from the
road into town we crossed a smaller road. As we went into the woods
we noticed a van coming down the road. When it passed the trailhead,
the driver yelled out the window. I turned around, and it was Semi
- he hunted us down!!!
He drove us to his parent's place in CT where
we stayed for the next 2 nights. We had a great time with him and
his family! We ate a lot, drank some, did errands, watched tv:
The ultimate Trail vacation. We really got a kick out of his two
pet pigs, too. How funny they were! One even did tricks. We had
some good talks about the trail. It was kind of sad hearing Semi
talk about it, though, and how disappointed he is that he quit.
Well, he brought us back today, and, to be truthful,
I was not happy about being back. I am really having a rough time
being out here lately. I've had enough of it all. It's actually
turned into more work than fun. I can not give up, though. Less
than 700 miles left.
The day only got worse, though. Stopped for a
break after about 6 miles and then set off to do another 5. After
1 mile or so we started hearing thunder rumbling. We hiked faster
thinking we'd beat it. We were not so lucky. With less than a mile
to our destination, the skies let loose. With every step it was
getting darker & the thunder louder. We reached a ravine and
then all hell broke loose. The lightning was crashing down so close
and the thunder was deafening. It got so bad we decided we better
get our packs with the tarp over us. What brought us to that decision
was a hit so close that I knew it was coming. My teeth were "buzzing," though
now I'm not sure if it was from the coming hit or me just hyperventilating.
God, was I shaking. I could hardly control myself. Andy was very
calm and reassuring, Thank God. We were soaked from head to toe,
but we made it out alive. At one point in there I thought I was
done with this whole thing for sure. But now we're in a dry (although
crappy) shelter with some nice guys. It's bedtime and I think we'll
try again tomorrow.
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Preparing to Hike
the Appalachian Trail?
Commonly used guides by A.T. thru-hikers
include the Appalachian
Trail Guides (published by the Appalachian Trail
Conference), the Appalachian
Trail Thru-Hiker's Companion, and the Appalachian
Trail Data Book. The guide series includes a guide
for each section, along with a series of trail maps. The
Thru-Hiker's Companion has helpful info on towns, shelters,
and water. The Data Book has basic distance info for road
crossings, shelters, and other features. All are excellent
tools for use during a long distance hike.