We left the pond and our nice site around 7:30am today and headed towards Caratunk. The sunrise on the pond was cool.
The elevation profile on our guide today looked very flat and tame compared to most other days in Maine. The first 6 miles or so to the Pierce Pond lean-to were quite easy and flat (for Maine). We got there and took a long snack break. We knew we had some time to kill because we had to get a ferry to cross the Kennebec River. It runs between 9-11am and 2-4pm and we knew we wouldn’t make the morning ferry. We hung out a bit at the lean-to and then made our way across the wooden dam there. That was kind of weird, who makes a dam out of wood, other than beavers?
The trail after there still looked flat for 4 miles or so, but it went back to standard difficult Maine terrain, with lots of small ups and downs, rocks, and roots to deal with. By that time, it was pretty hot out and it felt like summer again. We got to the river around noon and were first in line for the 2pm ferry. We ate lunch and lounged around by the river waiting. The “ferry” is a guide in a canoe which is the officially sanctioned way to cross the river because it’s too dangerous to ford due to highly variable water depth because of a hydroelectric plant / dam up the river. It certainly looked like it would have been dangerous to ford as the current was clearly powerful.
We hopped aboard the canoe with the guide and I helped paddle while Trippy took pictures and sat in the middle. The canoe floor actually even has a white blaze on it.
After that, we had a short hike to get to the Sterling Inn in Caratunk. A friendly local gave us a ride there to save a bit of road walk. We resupplied and also got a shuttle up to the Northern Outdoors compound a couple miles up the road for drinks and dinner. The compound includes the Kennebec River Pub, which makes some tasty brew.
Tomorrow we are back on the trail and headed towards Monson. We have some bad weather forecasted here, but we are planning to hike through it at this point.
Vital stats for Friday, September 5th :
Miles hiked today – 10.3
Mood – good
Physical state – normal
Smell – aight
Song stuck in my head – Chocolate by The 1975