Today we got a lift to back to New Jersey from Mom and Dad Hnatow. I’d like to say many thanks are in order to Mom and Dad Hnatow and Heiser (and Becca). They were all super hospitable, flexible, generous, and just amazing during our slackpack and zero days in eastern PA over the last two weeks. You guys are all awesome.
As far as the hike today, this is still one of my favorite areas on the AT that I’ve experienced thus far. There is a gentle climb up to Sunfish Pond, which is so cool and peaceful.
The trail winds along a narrow ridge and provides some nice views.
We also crossed by a neat pond swamp thing that some beavers had gone crazy on. Unfortunately we didn’t see any beavers.
On the negative side of things, it was (is) really hard mentally to be hiking away from friends and family. For the last 3 months the focus was always to get home to PA for the big wedding picnic and ride the excitement of being able to see everyone when we got home. Now that it’s over, it’s tough to refocus and stay motivated since it’ll be another 2 months or so until the end of the hike.
To make things more fun today, we got hammered with a downpour in the early afternoon. It was just one of those situations that almost comically sucks and that you have to try to laugh at and keep trucking along.
We ended up camping at a neat spot a couple hundred yards off the trail. Hopefully it stays dryish tonight. Tomorrow we continue trekking through the stormy weather here.
Vital stats :
Milestone – 1300 miles
Miles hiked today – 19.6
Mood – hanging in there. Had a few moments I was wishing I was back chilling in the atrium at work instead of hiking though.
Smell – like a Jersey swamp
Song stuck in my head – Don’t Go Breaking My Heart by Elton John and Kiki Dee (some other thru-hiker dude was horribly and hilariously belting this out in the rain while he was hiking)