Our Knees Were Taking a Beating
Each day our legs were taking a drubbing. Homemade patella support and knee braces were becoming the norm.
Our goal for the day was 11.7 miles away across difficult terrain. Along the way we would come upon our resupply point created by the AT Lodge.
An Unhappy Happy Fallon (Helen of Troy)
It was necessary to pack nine to ten days worth of food for this hike. (I understand from Spoons that Database did it in three). The AT Lodge has created a system in which you can split your food and place half in a bucket and they will hide it in the forest at an ultra secret spot near a Forest Service road. So….. half the weight to carry. This was the day that we would get to that food and we really needed it.
Produce With Her Story To Tell
We had not hiked far when we came upon an anxious appearing NOBO female hiking solo. She appeared to be on the verge of a panic attack.
We all stopped at once together. Her name was Produce and she was from Montreal. “I’ve just got to tell you my story and then I’ll be all right”. We, of course, were all ears. It seems that last night had been very windy. We could vouch for that. She had set up her tent and some time during the night she heard and felt a loud crash. When she got up this morning she found a huge tree had fallen down the side of her tent on the stakes. It was the matter of a foot from major trauma or worse. We asked if she wanted us to stay with her for awhile. “Nope! I’ve told my story now. I’m fine!” Before we knew it she was gone now at peace and pointing her directional compass Toward Katahdin
Not long after leaving Produce we came upon Crawford Pond. I didn’t know it at the time but I would soon be back there in a scramble for assistance.
Food had become an issue. Most of us had distributed well but there is a tendency to eat what you like first leaving the yuck food like dirt bars in your pack uneaten. By now I gag on dirt bars.
Allison Finds the Food!
When we came upon the Forest Service road we knew that we were close. Our treasure maps came out: white blaze across the road, another white blaze in about 25 feet, look right, spy pink survey flagging, follow rock and root trail for a ways (what else would it be up here), find tarp, uncover. Bingo. Allison found gold!
Amies ready To Resupply
We checked through the buckets. Zak’s Fallon’s, Amie’s, Alex’s and Allison’s were all there. No bucket for Defib or Jed. Grumble. I had Twizzlers in there. I had dried fruit in there! What’s the world coming to!!!!
Plus……. surprise surprise….. no phone signal.
As we were contemplating what to do I heard “Defib. How are you doing?” It was Hoot a fellow I had hiked briefly with way back North of Hot Springs. “I’ll never forget you’re friend coming up on Easter Sunday to give out Trail Magic. You know the woman wearing rabbit ears”. He was talking about Martha Roberts.
The Bond Between Hikers
Our dilemma was still with us. We could not call out for help. Everyone in our group offered to split their food with us so that we could stay together. That couldn’t happen. They would already be short of needed calories. Sharing was not an option.
I hiked back to Crawford Pond in the hopes of getting a signal. No luck. Jed and I walked in opposite directions in the hopes of getting a signal. No luck. We flagged down the only car we saw in the hopes of getting help. He was going to hike and didn’t want to help. Jed talked him into driving a mile for a signal. He begrudgingly did so but soon refused to go further.
We opened the other containers hoping our food was in one of them. No luck. Two of their owners had never made it out of the 100 miles so their cans were full. We thought about but did not take their food.
Then Mouth offered to run up the mountain to find a signal. Before we could say anything he was gone. The others finally moved on. Jed and I are big boys and we can take care of ourselves.
Three hours later the van from the lodge arrived. Mouth’s message had gone through. They had not found our bucket but they knew that those who owned the full buckets had quit. We plundered and then hiked.
Finally at Camp
Hours later we arrived in camp and were met with excitement. Our team was intact. Mouth had saved the day with his run up the mountain and the group had shown the willingness to share what they had in order to stay together. We had become a tramily.
From this point on at least for awhile we were bonded as tramily. It would be easy to hike on.