Peregrine caught up with me at rph shelter yesterday as well. His test results came back negative for lyme disease which is good news. Met someone at rph shelter that is more frugal then I am on the trail. Says he spent $300 total on all his mail drops and basically doing what I am no hostels,restuarants,hotels etc. Heard a new term yesterday as well. Trail Tragic. When you come across a cooler full of nothing but empty soda cans and candy wrappers. I hate trail tragic. I have came across a few of those myself. About 17 miles to the connecticunt-jew york border. They are saying which by looking at the data book seems to be true it is going to get harder and harder to resupply at a grocery store. Seems the trend is going to continue from here to Katahdin of convience stores and gas stations for resupply. UG UG UG UG :( :( :( :(. I don't want to be stuck spending $20-$30 for a 2-3 day resupply every convience store or gas station. Sure the people at the convience store or gas station love it cause it is money but that burns through a bank account/wallet in more then a hurry. And you definitely don't get your bang for your buck. Basically 2-3 days of chips/snacks/junk food for resupply at outrageous prices. Well I suppose I better get going if I am going to meet up with peregrine at Telephone Pioneers shelter. Made it to telephone pioneers shelter but peregrine wrote in the log book that he was heading into Pawling ny. two section hikers that I have been running into the last few days were just leaving as I showed up. Nobody else was at the shelter and it is dark now so I set up my ten inside the shelter without the rain fly just to keep the pesky insects off me maybe I can get some sleep tonight. Finishing my last two cokes. Someone left a half gallon size bag full of trail mix that I helped myself too and taking with me. My pack was feeling a little light need to keep it heavy lol lol lol. Free snacks I just can't pass up. The water source here isn't great. It is a puddle a surprisingly clear puddle. I filled up my 3l bladder and threw in some iodine tablets. Good thing I have those and use them sparingly for such cases as stagnant puddles for water sources. Get up early tomorrow. and head down the trail. Just in case you are wondering I can go about 15 miles on 3l of water which is good to know since I can't tell how much water I have left without taking it completely out of my pack. Which is a pain. For breakfast this morning I had a sandwich which consisted of two pieces of white bread, peanut butter,honey,spam single, peanut butter crunch cliff bar. Now I am eating more of that trail mix that I got yesterday here at the shelter. Got caught in the rain today heading toward mtn. algo shelter it was a nice down pour. Tripped over a rock and took a spill and scraped up my leg a little. Found a full 23 oz can of loco orange blend beer on the side of the trail SCORE!!!!. Then the rain finally quit and I set up camp about 3 or 4 miles from mtn algo shelter. made it to mtn algo shelter the next day. Hung everything out to dry. Filled up and hung my camp shower for later use. Now I am just sitting here enjoying my beer and combos and relaxing for the day. Boy I tell you some days are just rough of here :) :) :) :) :). These roller coasters are plenty to wear a guy out I tell you what. Ran out of bread yesterday so now I am eating my spam single topped with peanut butter and honey just by themselves. No more cliff bars left either. But my next resupply which is Salisbury Conneticut is only 18-19 miles away. Which is a days hike. So I may just do 12 miles today to the next shelter which is 1/2 mile off the trail which I am not fond of then do the other 4 or 5 miles into Salisbury the next day for resupply. Stopped at pine swamp brook shelter for the day. I could stop at limestone spring shelter and fill up on water then stealth camp near the road that goes into Salisbury which is what I may do instead. We will se when the time comes. Missed some trail magic the other day when I was sitting at mtn algo shelter. Heard it was about 1/2 mile up the trail and she was serving sodas and homemade apple pie and other stuff. Oh well you can't hit them all. besides by the time I heard about it I had finished my loco beer which equals about6 beers and it kicked my ass :) :) :) :). so all was still well. Looks like it is going to be another beautiful day in PARADISE. Saw in the trail log at mtn algo shelter lost and found left me a message saying tree beard I hear your not too far behind me looks like I am buying the beer then :) :) :) :). He is only 4 days ahead of me now. Got to housatonic river road today and met some geocachers. These people go out and find "treasure chests" around the country. It is just a big treasure hunt where they leave a note in the box and take an item/leave an item and record it on their blog on the net and such. Well anyway they said they would give me a ride into Salisbury Conneticut. I was like cool deal. Got into Salisbury and stopped at the local grocery store to resupply. Rain into a bunch of other hikers. Devoured a quart of orange sherbert and put two cans of Arizona in my bladder. One of the hikers said dude you are going to be running up those mtns. He was right I had one hell of a sugar buzz. But I only got 5 miles down the trail before the insoles in my boots were completely wore out and every rock I stepped on felt like a hot poker on the bottom of my feet so I had to quit for the day and add some more cushion. It always seems to be something I tell you what. But I still got 20 miles in on the day. The mags I wanted to read fell out of my pack somewhere along the trail as well damn it. Whenever I get good luck bad luck seems to follow or vice versa like with the rain and that beer. Oh well time to hit the trail and see what the day brings me. Made it into mass today. That just leave mass Vermont new Hampshire and Maine to go. Roughly 577 miles to Katahdin. Rain delay again today. I wish I had that backpackers mag so I could check out and fantasize about all the gear I want to get. I fixed the leaky tent for the most part at least all I can do for it now if it still leaks it is cause it is wore the fuck out. I should carry something to read for rain days but I don't know about the weight though. I think I will just stick with my journal and mini deck of cards and taking naps on rain days. I am definitely going to plan my next AT thru hike a lot better and get some good quality gear so my thru hike will be ALOT more enjoyable. Although I have had tons of fun on this trip but the gear failures are annoying as hell and they have been the majority of my problems. So if I get some good quality gear that will take the pounding of a 6 month hike on the AT it will definitely be a lot more enjoyable and fun. Plus I will be a lot more knowledgeable and know what it takes for a 6 month hike on the AT. But it has been a great adventure and learning exp. that is for sure and living the motto: Every Man Dies But Not Every Man Truly Lives. I am definitely truly living I would say. Just like the song goes: They call you the bandit an outlaw untamed shackled only by freedom you wear no mans chain some say they despise you well maybe they do but deep down inside them I bet they wish they were you. I think that song describes me perfectly. Life is all about living. FTW you got to do what you want to do and just keep living man. Like he says in easy rider once you make the money that is it your free. I believe that is what he was saying anyway. Yeah it is going to be hard to go back to society and have to deal with the bullshit but I will deal with it long enough to the get what I need and spending money to go back vagabond again. This absolute total freedom has got its grip on my and I am completely addicted to it and I am ok with that. Of course the last time it started to rain I decided to continue down the trail it down pours now this time I decide to set up camp instead of climbing another rock mtn in the rain and it just sprinkles and now seems to have quit. Figures. I know if I pack everything up and head back down the trail it will down pour. The gods seem to have a close eye on me. Oh well I may take a nap and see if it rains anymore or not play a couple games of solitaire. It is what it is and what happens happens. Yep it cleared up time to hit the trail again that is if I can get my ass moving again. Hard to get moving again after a long break. Of course it started sprinkling again. Finally made it to tom Leonard shelter. Called it a day here. Suppose to be a big storm coming through tonight. Set up tent in shelter. Have to retire my shorts cause the zipper doesn't work anymore and I wore a BIG HOLE in the crotch and since I am going commando have to retire them. Find myself a nice light paperback to read as well entitled missing since Monday by ann m. nartin. But I am sure now I will never get to read it. Found myself a 7.25 oz bag of refried beans as well that will give me an extra boost up the mountains :) :) :) :). UH 6 in drop UH another 6 in drop UH another 6 in drop off the mtn. There are times where this is more mtn climbing and scrambling then hiking. This trail is a zigzag motherfucker at times as well and you can get no where fast on it when you want to and the shelter is always at least 3 miles away when the bad weather hits. But it is what it is in PARADISE. I am still loving it and wouldn't want to be anywhere else but in the woods. I am always reminding myself and others that this is a voluntary hike no one is making us do this . It seems to be easy to forget that at times. As much effort and problems I have and it seems to take I am doing all this voluntarily and at my own free will. Some people may say how crazy is that. Like the one guy at the grocery store who couldn't understand why someone would strap a 30-50 pound pack on their back and start walking through the woods. Not All Who Wonder Are Lost. It's FREEDOM BABY YEAH. I am going to sew up my shorts instead of tossing them cause I have the needle and thread. Boy I tell you the problems and stuff I fix on the trail. One south bounder at the shelter today was surprised I was using the same gear I started with except for the boots. But I will most definitely have to get new gear when I got to Katahdin and some more money. Like I said this time some good quality gear that will last me awhile and take the abuse I throw at it and the abuse mother-in-law nature throws at it. But my goal is to finance living in the woods or on the AT year round. Cause this is where I belong. With mother-in-law nature and father time. Got another 80's song in my head today. "Loving every minute of it. Turn that dial all the way shot me like a rocket into space. Loving every minute of it." Headed out of tom Leonard shelter after waiting out a thunderstorm that never showed up. made it the 20 mile hike to Upper goose pond was going to go to cabin but it was another 3/4 of a mile trek up a mtn and after 20 miles and no daylight left I called it a day and set up camp next to upper goose pond for the night. Went to cabin the next day where they were serving coffee and blueberry pancakes for breakfast. Finally weight my pack at the cabin 30 lbs. without water and only a few days of food. A lot lighter then it was when I started. It will probably be around 40 after I load up on water and food. I found a pair of merrel flip flops that worked perfectly as insoles for my boots. So I finally got that problem fixed. The mosquitoes are a big annoyance. I like the black flies better at least they are not bloodsuckers just biters. Heard about a free hostel in Dalton called the bluebird or something like that. Suppose to be the best hostel on the trail. Have to as around Dalton to find out where it is though. Supposedly they do laundry and such free of charge. Sounds good to me. Have to check it out. Check out all these hiker boxes for stuff I can use. Everyone is heading to Kay wood shelter today which is a 18 mile hike. I will probably end up there myself if I ever get out of this cabin lol. Then into Dalton mass tomorrow. Stopped at mtn Wilcox north shelter yesterday and found a pair of Hanes hp dry socks, a pound of oatmeal, and emergency blanket, a garbage bag to wrap my sleeping bag in. Screw fell out of my glasses when I was going down the trail. Had to stop and fix them with some fishing line. The guys at neels gap in GA wanted me to get rid of the fishing line. sheesh. It always seems to be something for all the good luck I have like with the insoles and blueberry pancakes this morning some bad luck seems to always follow. Like with my glasses. It is like sooooooo annoying like for real. Good thing I am like mar. fix it otherwise I like wouldn't know what to do. Time to get moving again. Kind of looks like rain hope not. Where is my Machete? Had to do some bushwhacking on the trail today. You just had to plow through the tall grass and such. It never ceases to amaze me how much "stuff" to put it nicely the AT seems to run you though. Nicely who am I kidding after awhile it just becomes crap. Today there were more tree roots on the trail then rocks which surprised the hell out of me. At times the AT seems to turn you right into a whole line of it. Like in the shinnies your on a nice tourist trail turn the corner to get back on the AT and it turns to shit. rocks, roots galore. But it is what it is. Better then going to work. Everyone is heading to Kay wood shelter for the day and I am heading there myself only another 9 miles. Only another 9 miles it just rolls off the tongue like no big deal lol lol. Replaced my book with the adventures of huckleberry Finn. Little heavier but more to my liking. That is if I ever get a chance to read it. From the weather report I got from a fellow thru-hiker 95% chance of rain Monday which is 5 days from today. It has been very humid the last few days. I woke up yesterday and my wood walking sticks had water dripping down them. My glasses kept fogging over I missed the trail once. My bandannas hanging on my pack were dry when I started hiking and didn't take long for them to get soaked and I didn't even use one of them. Headed into Dalton mass. from Kay wood shelter with peregrine and another couple. Hit some trail magic on the trail a whole case of mtn dews. Everyone was passing them up so I took theirs :) :) :). Caught up to moon doggie and his lady friend at Kay wood shelter. WE all stopped at the local cafe in Dalton had breakfast. The couple offered to buy me breakfast but I said no thank you. It is unbelievable how much trail magic and luck I am having. I always seem to be at the right place at the right time. I declined the couples offer on breakfast cause I didn't want to hear the other hikers groan about how lucky I get or how I should stop mooching off others. They may or may not be thinking or saying that but that is what goes through my mind. Did get a ride to the local grocery store price chopper for some resupply hen headed to Cheshire mass where I stayed at St. Mary's after taking the long way there cause my piece of shit guidebook. Long way meaning and extra two miles. Picked up some more oatmeal, pudding, and food from hiker box at St. Mary’s along with a pair of boots that needed laces and were 1 ½ sizes too big but they are a lot better then the ones PA took out. That 1 ½ will just give my feet plenty of room to spread out and swell on these long hikes. Grabbed another pack cover for my pack as well just in case I get caught in the rain my pack doesn’t increase in rain weight. Then it was a nice 1800’ climb to Mark Noepel Shelter in the heat/humidity. A couple of section hikers were there one of them unloaded his snack bag on me. Got Mt Grey lock coming up which is the highest point in Mass. Try to make it to Vermont today. We will see. Lost & Found still 3 days ahead of me. Should get some NOBO’s to slow him down J J J J. I am glad I got that 3l bladder pack. I drink a lot more water with it and definitely needed on these horrific humid days. Although 3l is 5 pounds of water weight UH!!!! Speaking of water that is something that still seems to be popular not carrying a lot of water cause of weight and depending on water sources. Which is stupid since the next water source may be dry especially in PA. Yeah I fill up with 3l of water at 5 lbs. but that is one thing that I have run out of before and don’t want to very often. So if I must carry something it will be water. I am still amazed at how many hikers have absolutely NO wilderness survival skills at all. I mean NONE. I would think if your going to spend 6 months in the wilderness you would at least like to know something. KNOWLEDGE IS POWER and it doesn’t weigh anything. Made it to Wilber clearing shelter when I just ran out of energy and called it a 12 mile day. Vermont is only 7 miles north of here. Mt Grey lock wasn’t too bad cause you did the majority of the climbing before Mark Noepel shelter and the Greylock summit was only 3 or 4 miles north of that. The next tent I get is going to be completely free standing cause these “designated” tent spots won’t let you stake anything out. They are all either wood platforms,gravel or something else that won’t let you stake. But I got it figured out. I just throw a stake down where I can and run a rope everywhere I need it. Always solving problems out here. But that is all part of the adventure. I could have packed everything up and headed into the shelter before the rain but then I would be bombarded with the gnats and such . That wouldn’t work. There is one good thing about this wooden tent platform it is raised off the ground so no chance of my tent sitting in a lake this time. Found a new bottle of iodine tablets at Wilbur clearing shelter. Rained last night and I ran out of energy yesterday after only doing 10 miles so I am taking the day off. Sit and read the adventures of huckleberry Finn maybe tap a nap and be lazy J J J J. Set up camp next to a creek about 1 ½ miles from Melville nauheitm shelter and Aaron and big country show up. It was nice to see them again. Then another thru-hiker showed up. Once again he sees me and says you must be tree beard I’ve heard about you.
Gear List for my next thru-hike.