We knew there was a chance of rain so we planned to only go 6.8 miles to the next hut, Zealand Falls. We hung around with the croo for awhile and finally left around 10:30. The day started off with a steep but enjoyable rocky climb up South Twin Mountain...a 1200-foot gain over .7 miles! It was cold and windy at the top, but we descended quickly and then followed the ridgeline for most of the day. Long Trail and Icebreak were stopped along the trail for lunch so we joined them and Gumby and Snowy came shortly after. We left with Snowy River for the few remaining miles, which were fairly flat until a downhill at the end. We heard rumbles of thunder and got a few sprinkles but thankfully it didn't last.
We came across Gumby waiting on the side of the trail shortly before the hut. It was about 3:30 and we figured it was too early to ask for work-for-stay...we waited around a bit but got impatient and headed to the hut anyway. We got bowls of soup and scored a work for stay! Long Trail and a southbounder are here as well. Gumby hiked on and Snowy scored the ultimate...a guest's husband wasn't able to make it to the hut and she didn't cancel the reservation...Snowy yogi-ed the spot! He got to eat dinner with the guests! And he gets a bunk tonight! We're all so jealous.
Dinner was stuffed pasta shells, salad, corn, bread, and cookies for dessert. We're getting spoiled with this hut food! After dinner we were part of the "thru-hiker program" and told stories of our adventures to the guests. The croo said they don't have a lot of work for us so will probably just have us sweep in the morning...good deal for us!
It started raining around 7 and has been storming since. The forecast calls for heavy rain tonight and tomorrow. Are we going to get any more views in the whites?!
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