Thursday, September 29, 2011

September 27

A gorgeous morning in the mountains! There was not a cloud in the sky as the two of us packed our things and climbed the South Horn. We had an awesome view of the valley and fog below. From there we climbed the west peak of Bigelow Mountain for 360 degree views of everything, including a huge lake which we found later to be Flagstaff Lake. At this point, we also crossed the 2000-mile mark! Incredible.
Avery Peak was the last of the range and we climbed the rocky summit for even more spectacular views. A man who thru-hiked in 1969 was out for the day and he spoke with us for a bit...I can't imagine how difficult the trail would have been back then! We had a long descent and took a lunch break at the bottom. Supposedly these climbs were the last big ones before Katahdin!
The terrain flattened out a lot and was a bit less rugged as we passed over Little Bigelow Mountain and stopped for a break at the shelter below. We filled up on water and headed north for 2.5 more miles to a campsite. We crossed a road and then came to a flooded section of Flagstaff Lake. There was a plank bridge across but it was floating in the deep, murky water. No way around either. Bear Bag went first, forgoing my suggestion to change into his crocs, and as soon as he stepped on the plank it sunk and his feet got wet. He walked the rest of the way across, each step pushing the planks beneath the water, but he made it across without further incident. Then it was my turn. I put my crocs on, waded out to the planks, and walked across while Bear Bag steadied them from the other side. The water was deep and I was terrified of falling in but I made it with only wet feet and legs. The next mile was fairly easy but I was happy to reach the camp site at Flagstaff Lake. We are the only ones here tonight...why do I always hear strange noises when no one else is around..? Tomorrow calls for more great weather, and tomorrow we cross the Kennebec!
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