08:55 In Memory of Scott Dale Garland
Let it never be said that it’s easy to get back on the trail after being off for awhile. In my case this time I was dealing with increased Vert T. Go daily. I’m not sure if it was the cramped apartment or not but it was time for some wide open spaces!
09:24. 1922 Bridge over the Juniapa River
For once the transfer back to Pennsylvania went smoothly. Rental to airport , Uber driver to Amtrak in Providence, Amtrak to Philadelphia then change to Harrisburg and finally Lyft driver to Duncannon.
09:30. The Susquehanna River-Reed Township-Pennsylvania
Well almost smoothly. Vert T. Go had decided to tag along with me even though I had told it that I wanted to take this trip solo. Hiking from Enterprise to the Uber pickup point with the pack was a wavering challenge. When I finally made it to my train seat I was more than relieved. Seven uninterrupted hours of relaxation in my future watching America pass by out the window.
After the transfer to the Harrisburg train I was continuing my peace and quiet when I heard a commotion in the back of the car. Wild high pitched screams of cussing and blabbering that could not be interpreted. Suddenly a body came rushing down the isle and dove into the empty seat next to me. Sadly she overshot the seat and ended up on me. A large purse she was carrying followed her finding a stopping point only when it hit my head. Think of Twiggy… or maybe in this generation Taylor Swift. She was the polar opposite. Right behind her came the conductor asking for her ticket and to put her mask on. She cussed him with the only words that could be understood the cuss word itself. She finally rummaged through her purse and found her crumpled ticket……. to Washington D.C. He asked her to put her mask on about a dozen times while she verbally abused him. In a drunken swirl she asked me how long it would be before we got to Washington. I didn’t have the desire to inform her that she was on the wrong train heading in the opposite direction so I told her an hour and a half. “Oh, thank you”. With that she sat back and became quiet. She did finally put her mask on but it only covered her nose because she was afraid no one would hear her if she covered her mouth.
I fell asleep and when I awoke she and her purse were gone. “Throw Mama From the Train” came to mind as I dealt with the Vert T. Go which had returned because of her screaming. I guess I’ll never know if that sweet lady ever got turned around from NOBO to SOBO.
09:39. It was Time to Climb Away from the Susquehanna
The first day back began with a flat 2.16 mile hike out of Duncannon. I was thankful for that since I was carrying six days of food and more water than normal. The extra weight played heavy on my legs. I wondered how I’d handle the climb.
10:55. The Susquehanna Slowly Melts Away
The climb up and away from the river was not as bad as I thought it would be but…..
11:42. It Certainly Came with More Than it’s Fair Share of Rocks
Luckily my legs and cardiovascular system is now more accustomed to this kind of abuse and it appeared that the ten days away would not be catastrophic.
13:11. Guthook Described this as “View” but I definitely know it’s the Susquehanna
The climb was slow and along the way I found “The Hurries”. She was “Not Inna Hurry” and he was “Inna Hurry”. We had met that morning at the hostel and we along with two others named Glen and Rick had all eaten breakfast together. It had been a reunion with Sparky who had provided me a ride to the train 10 days before.
15:13. Thank Goodness! Trail Magic!
At the parking lot at highway 225 we came upon Trail Magic! Actually it was intended for John and Kelly but we all jumped in. My pack was full but I was super thirsty so I went for the fluid. In the picture left to right: Inna Hurry, Tierny, Pat, John, Kelly and Glen ( The Professor)
15:35. Tierney and Pat: Our Trail Angels
I cannot tell you what a lift it is to see perfect strangers out there waiting to help you with food and fluids.
16:39. Glenn (The Professor)
Glenn has retired as a college professor teaching Outdoor Adventure. The career has mushroomed! He is from Texas a d is the first one I spoke to that morning. I actually returned to the trail with the thought that I was going to stay by myself. That lasted about 10 seconds when I met Glenn. 30 minutes later it was Glenn, Rick, the Hurries, Sparky and I all trading was stories in the diner.
16:53. John and Kelly on Table Rock
Out for a couple of days of backpacking as a form of date night, John and Kelly had managed to find a sitter for their two sons to make this getaway possible. She is an executive for CBS and he is a manager of children’s programs for the local affiliate. (Please correct me if I got any of the wrong)
There was only one shelter within reach that first day back and that’s where we landed . The Hurries set up hammocks, Glenn and Rick joined a family inside the shelter along with Curious George who had also been in the hostel. As for me I set my tent up near the trail near three friends who were doing a short section hike. That meeting would prove to be more than entertaining! I would soon be forced to spend the evening and next morning in laughter before I’d be able to “hike on.”