After that the trail flattened out (I wish you could see the drastic change in the elevation profile) and it was amazing. There were still rocks and roots and mud but we were just walking. So wonderful. We started to pick up the pace, and took a break at Cooper Brook Lean-To around 9:00. From there we busted out 8 more smooth miles and stopped for lunch at a campsite on Jo-Mary Lake. 15.9 miles done by noon! We were there longer than expected since we both took privy breaks and left around 1. More beautiful walking and then we came to Pemaduncook Lake. Through the trees we saw beautiful clear water and rocks scattered across the shoreline, so we took a short side trail for pictures. And guess what else we saw...Katahdin! And guess what ELSE we saw...a moose! She was at the edge of the lake about a hundred yards away but we could make out her features and got lots of pictures...so happy I finally got to see a moose! And the view of Katahdin in the distance was incredible; it was so much closer than it was yesterday! The end is starting to feel real.
More walking and we came to a stream that was supposedly a ford but we rock- and log-hopped across. It was about 4:30 when we took a break and only had 6.6 miles left! Those last few were hard though; my feet ached and my entire body was ready to be done! The trail followed the shoreline of Nahmakanta Lake for awhile, and we saw the full moon already up and illuminating the water. So beautiful. Darkness came fast though and we filled up water by headlamp, passed a shelter, and knew we had only one more mile to go. We made it to the spring just before 8, and we had done 30.3 miles!! My biggest day by almost 4 miles! Exciting but exhausting.
Tomorrow we have to do at least 22 miles, and hopefully a little further, so we can summit on Wednesday.
I ripped the last page out of my guidebook tonight, to keep in what I call my "cheat sheet" in my hip belt. I've been doing this for 7 months and all that remain are two pages. I cried. 37.2 miles left; I'm not sure I'm ready.
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