The AT turned east and we followed it, headed toward New Hampshire and Maine. We saw lots of northbounders we’ve been crossing paths with for a while. We hiked with Johawk and Murphy in the morning while 50/50 and Mambo decided to spend another day at the Inn. The day brought easy Vermont walking. Read More
Today was the last day that we would follow the Long Trail, before the Appalachian Trail turns east while the country’s first long distance trail continues north to the Canadian border. Back in the last century, years before I met Mama Bear, my first long distance trip was along that trail. Traveling alone, I met a French Canadian with whom I walked for about a week. Our conversations had a certain poetry stemming from the combination of my broken French and his broken English. He described to me how he had found himself in Vermont’s Northern Kingdom: “For my heart; it was in need of a journey, and so I am here.”
We spent the morning lounging with Mama Bear’s family, eating a leisurely breakfast at the bucolic picnic tables behind our motel. The kids and their cousins enjoyed some pool swimming, then we all piled into the car to head back to the trail. Read More
The morning started with hard rain and we ate our breakfast huddled under the hammock tarp. It had slowed to a drizzle by the time the kids and Mama Bear started hiking. I packed up the wet tarp and started soon after. While I was hurrying to catch up, I took the opportunity for a morning swim in rocky pond. The silver mist rose slowly from the ponds surface and the soft drizzle rippled the mountains’ reflections.
The Green Mountains have welcomed us home to northern New England. Lush forests, barren granite outcroppings, and plentiful boggy board walks. We even got to ride on a high speed quad chairlift.
We awoke to what would have been a beautiful sunrise if it weren’t for the thick clouds settled into the valley filling our view with a uniform gray. But as we ate our breakfast and sipped our morning beverages the sun grew stronger and began to burn through the mist, allowing the distant mountains to melt into varying shades of darker and lighter gray. It was a spectacular, if monochromatic, display. Read More
Now in the forests of northern New England it feels like we’re back in our home playground. The Green Mountains are green indeed. Lush and damp with thick underbrush and mossy tree trunks it feels like an elfin garden. We hiked through clouds and mist with the occasional light rain but were snug in our tents before any of the hard rains came.
We awoke to the sunrise from the top of Mt. Greylock. We enjoyed the view from the nearby summit tower, which was constructed in 1933 when Mama Bear’s grandfather was a student at the nearby Williams College. Almost seventy years later, that same grandfather backpacked eighteen miles over three days into Williamstown on our 2002 southbound thru hike when he was eighty-nine years old. Passing over those rugged miles again today (with the incredibly steep rocky climbs and descents) impressed upon us just how incredible a feat that was. Read More
We spent a lazy morning lingering with friends, in no rush to say goodbye. Cartwheel had her hair done. Everyone cooed over the baby. We ate more good food. Eventually we did head back to the woods and the miles melted away. Read More
Over the years that our kids have grown, our good friends Neva and Fredo have always made an effort to come see us, no matter what part of the world they were living in at the time. Now that they have a new one of their own, it’s our turn to travel to see them. Only, apparently not quite yet. Read More