We’ve just entered Maine and are finding it much as we found Georgia during our first week: rain-drenched, cold, muddy and exhausting.
It’s fitting and rather beautiful that I am still being taught the same lesson I’ve had to learn from day one: how to relinquish any misapprehensions about being in control.
We left Gorham, NH yesterday on a lovely packed-earth trail that gently climbed up reasonably-sized mountains. It bodes so well, thought I. I am going to fly ahead, thought I.
The last few miles of New Hampshire were slippery climbs over chaotic boulder fields in the rain. We meant to do 5 miles of Maine but changed the plan to only do .5 miles. Maine began with huge drops down precipitous rock faces. I had to give up trying to walk and spent most of the time sliding down on my rear. A distance that would have taken 10 minutes over good terrain took an hour. My legs and arms were soaked with rain and gritty with mud. If I’ve ever been dirtier in my life, nothing springs to mind.
Honeybuns and I stumbled down into the Carlo Col shelter and found the rest of Team Pie in a similar state. We decided to scrap our original plan and not move on tonight.
1900 miles hasn’t made me immune to fickle weather or strenuous trail conditions. I am better prepared now and stronger now and tougher now, but still am not the master of this situation. The Trail will do what it wants and I have to adapt.
— Knock (August 21, 2015)