Friday, July 1, 2011

June 28

The stay at the hostel was enjoyable and we left to head back to the trail around 7. Fiber, Veto, and Pappy got a hitch first, and Bear Bag and I got one shortly after. The guy dropped us off a little ahead of the trail and we couldn't figure out where the trail went. We saw blazes at the intersection of three roads but they seemed to lead us in a circle. We wandered around for awhile, crossing the street several times, when a trucker stopped at the light told us the trail was just up the road. Okay, we'll try that way again....but no luck. Eventually we figured it out, after at least a half hour, and began the steep climb out of town...about a thousand feet over a little more than half a mile. Very rocky with big boulders that required some hand over hand climbing, but an enjoyable climb. Climbing on the rocks is a nice change of pace once in awhile! At the top we were treated to lots of blueberries and raspberries a bit farther on. The rest of the day was ridge walking so was fairly flat but had a few rocky sections. About a half mile before the shelter, we heard a rustling and looked to the left to see a bear running away from us! It stopped about 25 yards from the trail; the closest I've been to one so far! I could see the brown on its nose and could see the facial features clearly. We walked hesitantly past as the bear wasn't moving any farther. That makes nine bears! We're at Leroy A. Smith Shelter tonight; I'm tenting and hoping it doesn't storm as forecasted. Tomorrow is a short 13.8-mile day!
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