June 6, 2017
After packing my backpack for two days, including an extra day’s food, I hung the remaining 4 days of food and my food bag on a hook in the garage of the White Mtn Lodge & Hostel, where I’ll hike back to after 21 miles. Instead of requiring a ride back, I’ll turn left on the highway and hike .1 miles to the hostel.
Snow, sleet, rain, and miles of steep rocks, including some flat rock faces up to 30 ft with wood slats attached to the rock adding some security along with the natural crevices for foot and hand holds. My bouldering, rock climbing and mountain climbing experiences allowed me to do these difficult climbs with confidence.
After 6 miles, I got to Carter Notch Hut for the night, followed by GI Joe and Redirect. We got leek and potato soup, coffee and chocolate cake. We will stay the night on the floor of their dining. We also have been promised leftovers from their dinner fixings for their guests and the crew. Tonight we get Brussel sprouts and falafels.
A few days ago, when summiting Mt Lafayette, we met a group of dozens of young teenage students from Quebec, Canada. On that gusty, sleeting cold day, we took their group picture on the summit and one of the teachers took one of us. We each questioned to ourselves the preparedness of the group for the wintery weather, especially since several students were wearing cotton outer layers with no wind or rain coat. Today, at the Carter Hut, we were told that this group had to be rescued and escorted to safety. They were fortunate that no one died. However, we were told that one of the girls in the group was left by some, who hiked to a hut. When the rescuers found her she was suffering from hypothermic symptoms and seriously traumatized. How could these adult leaders let this happen?! I used to think that with these mtns being under 5,000 feet in elevation were not hard to climb or severely affected by higher altitude weather, like I experienced in the PNW with mountains exceeding 10,000 feet. I was wrong! So, I can understand their misjudgment but nit their apoaraent ignorance of the weather forecast. I’m so grateful that they got safely out of the mountains.
Before bed, I will need to fix my pack from a broken clip that holds my top part of my pack. I’ll gerryrig it til I complete my hike in apx 300 miles. Afterwards I’ll contact Osprey for a permanent fix, since they have lifetime guarantees on their packs.
Dinner was stupendous! Included with all previously noted was pineapple upside down cake made in a cast iron skillet, hummus, mint chocolate cake, salad, loaf bread and pita bread, all made in this remote mountainous hut. For our room and board, we cleaned dishes, pots and pans, then we’ll sweep before we bed down.
With a long 13.7 mile hike tomorrow, over and down more rock boulder mountains, we plan to begin our hike back to Gorham by 7am, giving us sufficient time to beat sunset and have some chill time before we sleep and begin again on Thursday. Maine will be 16 miles away when we hike north on Thursday the 9th.