We got a lot of rain in our last night in the tarp. The tarp performed admirably yet again though and kept us nice and dry. We got up and were excited to get moving, as it was our last full hiking day. We hiked up to Rainbow Ledges above the lake and saw that Katahdin was shrouded in clouds today. That’s a bummer for the large group that climbed it today.
I moved around until I got enough of a signal to check that Penn State won last night and then we hiked on. LET’S GO STATE!
Most of the terrain was pure, good Maine trail. We hiked out of the 100 miles of wilderness right around lunch and then we stopped in the Abol Bridge Camp Store/Restaurant. We rocked a big lunch with Shellback, charged our phones up, and pushed on for our last 10 miles of trail (excluding that little 4000 ft. climb tomorrow).
The adrenaline started to pump for me this afternoon. The hiking was pretty easy as we stayed near the Penobscot River and then walked along some tributaries to the north. We entered Baxter State Park and hiked through it to Katahdin Stream Campground. We signed in at the ranger’s station and are hikers #505 and 506 to finish this year. Right when we left the station, we saw Ma and Pa Hnatow waiting for us. It was awesome to see them there. They brought us pizza and beer and we hung out at a picnic table with two other thru-hikers we met today, Viking and Patch. We hung out until it started to get dark and cold and then we made out way to the lean-to we reserved at the campground. We decided to reserve one ahead of time instead of take our chances at the small first-come first-serve thru-hiker site here, called The Birches. It turned out we would have been fine as there aren’t that many thru-hikers climbing tomorrow.
Our plan is to wake up at 2:30am, hit the trail at 3am, night hike up, and attempt to hit the summit by sunrise. It’s going to be freaking cold! I’m so pumped. It feels pretty weird to be writing one of the last daily blog posts. It’s been a lot of fun sharing these with friends, family, enemies, sheep, hackers, and Internet – enabled midgets. I suspect sleep is going to be difficult tonight, but that’s OK.
Vital stats for Sunday, September 14th :
Miles hiked today – 19.9
Mood – adrenaline pumping excitement
Physical state – ready to climb Mama K now
Smell – putrid moose corpse
Song stuck in my head – Lateralus by Tool