My southbound hike of the Long Trail didn’t go as planned. I had to stop after 13 days due to a knee injury. As I said in a tweet, “Th-Th-Th-Th-Th…That’s all, folks. I’m not continuing the hike due to constant pain that has zapped all the fun out of the journey.” I’m disappointed that I wasn’t able to hike the trail end to end, but I’m glad I at least tried it. And I will be back next year to complete the remaining 182 miles.
Despite not finishing and having to deal with knee pain for weeks that followed leaving the trail, I still look back to my days on the trail and think to myself, “What an amazing experience.” Leaving the trail was a hard thing to do. I struggled with mixed emotions. My heart was into the hike and I wanted to continue. But my brain, and the pain, said it was time to stop. Even after I decided I would not continue the hike, I would stare out at the mountains and daydream about being on the trail. Even now, weeks later, when I see a tree covered mountain I think to myself how great it would be hiking up and over the summit. But a thru hike wasn’t meant to be for me this year.
This is not it for me and the Long Trail though. I’m planning to complete my hike next year, and I hope to re-attempt a thru hike again the following year. Also, I want to write up a blog post about my experience hiking the first 90 miles of the Long Trail from the Canadian border to Jonesville, Vermont. I hope to do this within the next week or so, but I also need to finish writing the second edition of my iPad book. Time will tell if I actually write the blog post. Meanwhile, enjoy the pictures I took during my journey.
I decided to weigh every item going with me on my end-to-end hike of the Long Trail. I’m unfortunately carrying about 5 pounds more than I was hoping, but I remind myself this is a month long hike, not a 3 to 5 day trip. I can do without some gear, such as the Solio charger, on shorter trips.
With only 5 days left before I start my hike, I spent the day packing and unpacking my backpack. To my surprise, every thing fit. But also to my surprise, the unofficial total weight is 45 pounds. This includes food and water. I was hoping my total weight would be 5 to 10 pounds less.
One week from today, on August 23, I start a month long journey to hike the Long Trail from end to end. I plan to start at the Vermont-Canadian border, and hike south to North Adams, Massachusetts. I’m not exactly sure how long the hike will take me, but it should be somewhere between 25 and 35 days depending on my daily mood, how much or little I hike each day, and so on.
The other day I mentioned I made a pot cozy for my cooking mug. Today I decided to test it by cooking up a box of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese. I’m happy to report the test was a success.
I’m preparing to take a long distance hike in a few weeks (more details on that coming soon), so I’ve been researching different ways to reduce the amount of fuel I need for cooking. I came around this neat posting that explains how to make an backpacking pot cozy. It sounds like a neat idea, and perfect for me since I plan to eat a lot of Mac-n-Cheese on the hike. So I took a stab at making my own pot cozy for my Snow Peak Trek 700 titanium mug. I’m happy with the end results, but I have yet to test the cozy to see how effective it is. That will be my next project later this week.
We took a 3-night/4-day camping trip to Silver Lake in Vermont. We had a great time. Our camp site was on top of a hill surrounded by trees, and the lake was just a short walk down the hill. Pictures from our trip are available here.
I’m not sure I would buy this tent, but I do like the name. An inflatable tent does sound interesting, but at 11.5 pounds plus a hand pump, I’m not sure it’s for me. Then again, my current “big” tent does take 5 to 10 minutes to setup and teardown.