Appalachian Trail Journals 09-04-03

Journals From A 2003 Thru-Hike of the Appalachian Trail (by Loony)

Entry #136 – September 4, 2003

7:30 PM – What a night. It rained, rained, rained. A pretty good storm blew through around 3 AM. Thunder & lightning. Some seemed pretty close, but I felt so glad we were below in the valley that I wasn’t too scared. Unfortunately, all our stuff got soaked. I’m not sure if it was because we were set up on a tent platform, or what. The rain seemed to seep through the bottom of the tent so that we were lying in puddles.

Got a late start – around 10, because we waited for the rain to stop. Martha Graham had already left & Oreo & Buttercup were behind us shortly. Just about a half mile down the trail, we ran into trouble. There was a raging whitewater river surging down the mountain, with no bridge to cross. The water was deep & churning with all the rain, and any rocks that might have been used to cross were swallowed up. Getting to the other side there was out of the question. Oreo & Buttercup were there soon & we decided to head upstream. We bushwhacked up the hill for awhile and came to a point where the river was split into two smaller sections. At the time I did not think it was a good idea to be up so far off the trail in case something happened. Oreo decided we should build bridges, so that’s what we did. We threw down logs & rocks & managed to make it across. I was thinking about Martha Graham though & how she had left early. Where had she crossed? Hopefully she made it OK!

From there it was a pretty easy 4 miles to the Pinkham Notch Visitor’s Center. We made it in time for AYCE lunch & got 1 meal free with a coupon a SoBo had given us. We stuffed ourselves. After that we dried all our stuff out on the picnic tables outside. We had thought about staying at the lodge there, but the prices were too high. Anyway, it didn’t rain anymore & we’re tented just about a half-mile up the trail. So we’re glad we didn’t give in & spend the money.

Tomorrow we climb Wildcat, which is said by some to be the toughest climb in the Whites!