A Family Adventure of the 2,185 mile hike from Georgia to Maine - 2014

A brief update

The kids are fully integrated back into their public school (they only missed the first two days of this year). The adults are similarly back to focusing on a broader array of responsibilities than simply moving the family safely north.  I have been remiss in my promised notes about the gear we used and any summary posts. Alas, that may remain the case for a while longer, so I thought I’d add just a brief update. Read More

August 31 – Head in the Clouds

We woke up early and hit the trail by five thirty to try to beat the forecasted weather expected to roll in later in the day. Most of the other thru-hikers had a similar approach and were on the trail between five and five-thirty. But even Spider-Man, the fastest of us up the mountain (in about two hours and ten minutes), ended up with his head in the clouds. Read More

August 30 – Out of the Wilderness

The Hundred-Mile Wilderness may be an historical name designation only (it is not true wilderness in either the sense of the 1964 Wilderness Act or in true remoteness, being accessible by several private logging roads). But it does have psychological import for thru-hikers nearing the end of their journey. After a Katahdin sunrise, we walked out of the wilderness to meet Mama Bear’s parents for the final few miles of the trail. Read More

August 29 – Rainbow Ledges

Our last day in the. Hundred-Mile Wilderness, we spent the evening on Rainbow Ledges enjoying the hemlock-framed view of Katahdin. We were joined by fellow thru-hikers Spider-Man, Blink, and. Bear Juice. The short day afforded plenty of time for lounging, swimming and berry picking. The kids stained their mouths blue with the juice of the abundant wild blueberries and huckleberries growing along the ledges. Read More

August 28 – Because They Can

The kids have now made good on their declared desire to hike a thirty mile day, which has been kicking around since their formative hiking days with Twelve Percent. He was the one to first inspire them to do a twenty-plus mile day out of the Smokies to the Standing Bear hostel. We didn’t quite make it to Standing Bear because we waited for an hour at a road crossing to meet the woman kenneling Orion for that stretch (dogs are not allowed on the trail the a Smokies or in by Baxter State Park in Maine), but we did break twenty miles. Read More

August 27 – Whitecap

As we get closer to finishing and returning to our somewhat more indoor lives, our thoughts are naturally returning to home. We’re savoring our last few days out here before the kids return to school, I return to the office, and Mama Bear returns to field. It’s nice, therefore, to be in our familiar recreational playground- lands we come to every year. So it’s exciting that the Forest Society of Maine, an organization I do a lot of work for back in more normal life as land conservation attorney, is working on a project with Pine State Timberlands, LLC to add to the conserved recreational amenities we’re passing through right now. Read More

August 26 – Gulf Hagas

Every once in a while it’s nice to take a day off. And what better way to spend a day off then hiking and swimming in one of the world’s special spots. So here in our last week on the trail we decided it would be the perfect spot for our first near-trail zero-mile day. This is an area of Maine that we come to every year, so it seemed fitting to have a bunch of friends and family come join us to lounge around for the day. Read More

August 25 – Katahdin Iron Works

Living in Maine has many perks, one of which is having family come meet us for a day in the middle of the hundred mile wilderness. We would spend two nights car camping on the Katahdin Iron Works road along the western branch of the Pleasant River, taking a zero-mile AT day to hike the 8.5 mile Gulf Hagas loop with friends and family. After 135.6 AT miles, today was Little John’s last backpacking day with us (he would stick around for the 8.5 mile day hike the next day as well). Read More

August 24 – Slugundy Gorge

Little John plunged out of the back eddy below Slugundy Falls, letting the current grab him and whip him around the smooth wall of the gorge, spitting him out in a foam of white into the open water of he gorge. It was perhaps the third time he’d let the current spin him like a washing machine while RobinHood perched apprehensively on the thin ledge, not sure how willing he was to let the current pummel him along. Read More

August 23 – Entering the Wilderness

More large fords today; the kids love wading through the water and Little John hit a hundred miles hiking with us just before we all enter the Hundred Mile Wilderness area leading to Katahdin. He’ll join us for another thirty, getting off at Gulf Hagas. Read More