14 June 2021. Day 67. 13.9 Miles + 807.1 Miles = 821.0 Miles. Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity-Jig!

09:34. Sage’s Ravine on the Connecticut- Massachusetts State Line

It was time for Silver to go back to work and for Hawkeye and I to get back to our main goal. It actually worked out well for us because while we got a bit of a break we had managed to hike every day.

Trail Magic Via Family

My brother Scott and Wendy had made the trip to Great Barrington to deliver the equipment care package that Jan had put together. We found a Thai restaurant for dinner and then……. of course Ice Cream!!!!!!! The care package has been put to good use. Everything in it was intended to lessen weight and it did just that. I traded my 15 degree sleeping bag for a 20 degree quilt; my MSR stove for a MSR pocket rocket and the Ursack food bag for a Summit to Sea Food bag. All are smaller and lighter. It was great to see Wendy and Scott as we shared trail stories and our desire to eat real food.

Hawkeye About to Tackle Sage’s Ravine

The ravine was quite a bit different than anything else we had hiked on the AT. It meandered through thick forest and provided multiple water cascades and rock hopping.

As a very special bonus….. it was raining! Again! That would be an extra little bit of adventure to tackle the rock diagonal shelves of Mount Race, Everett and Brunson.

09:54-10:10. Sages Ravine

We were working our way to the state line 0.9 miles away.

10:20. Crossing Over Into Massachusetts

Bridges for the most part in the Northeast on the AT are not a thing. You are basically left to rock hop or balance on large sticks. This was the case for this entry into Massachusetts. I had finally hiked into my home state. It would soon welcome me with a harder steady rain.

11:04. Mount Washington, Massachusetts

Not the big Mt Washington… just a smaller cousin . I had only fallen twice in the first two months. The third happened with Hawkeye when I slipped off of a board which was broken and submerged in a swamp. That one threw me into a gaggle of bramble.

On this day I would have my 4th, 5th and 6th falls. They were all significant. Welcome to Massachusetts in the rain.

12:04. Rain + Rock = Dangerous Conditions

Just as I was beginning to climb the heavy rain hit. Each step became even more tentative as I had to make sure That I had some sort of foot plant to bear my weight and the weight of the pack. The odd collection of boulders has always been a challenge for me but these huge slabs of diagonal smooth rock was a whole new ballgame.

12:27. Mount Everett

I breathed a sigh of relief when I saw this cairn……. but wait! It wasn’t the top…. just a place where other tired climbers had also stopped to catch their breath and decided to add a rock. I trudged on.

13:42. Summiting Everett

I kissed the earth once on the way up. Another slam to my now bloodied right elbow and a hyperflection of my left knee. I was more than glad to see the steps. They at least gave my tired legs an opportunity to have a platform to step upon. On the left of the third picture is Sauce and on the right is the Grand Perambulator.

17:25. Jug End

Jug End was one of those extra hikes that the Appalachian Trail has added which at times seems to just be there to extend mileage and other times is there to force you to go through the worst possible terrain. This section of the hike provided me with my sixth and seventh Falls. Both times I was attempting to walk down the solid rock face when my feet went out from under me. The first was just a fall straight to the rock and I managed to hold myself back from sliding down the rest of the way. However the second fall involved losing my hiking sticks to the left and to the right, my hat behind me, and it flipped me forward sliding on my stomach down the rock face. When I managed to stop I lay there for a moment assessing whether anything was broken. It was the first time I’ve actually had a fall in which I was concerned that I was not going to stop the downward trend. Again my right allow took the brunt of the damage with a laceration added to my collection of abrasions and contusions. I finally got the bleeding to stop by using my father’s handkerchief to apply pressure and then as a compression bandage. Once again I was lucky. After a full assessment I realized that I had broken no bones and although both knees now her and I had a abrasion down the left side of my leg I was soon up and very carefully moving my way down the rock face. I wanted this climb to be at an end!

18:42. Egremont, Massachusetts

I finally made it off the mountain and at the bottom found Silver waiting for me with some straps for my new hiking quilt. He helped me re-dress the wound on my elbow and once I was bandaged up I said my goodbyes to him and hiked on in order to try to find Hawkeye whom I had not seen for most of the day. It was 6:30 in the afternoon. The forest was so thick I thought the sun had already set but once I came out into the open area I realized the sun was very much still active. I pushed out another 2 1/2 miles in order to find Hawkeye. 

19:33. Shay’s Rebellion

Our history concerning our dislike for taxes isn’t a new thing. The American revolution came about partly because of taxes put upon us by the English and even after the revolution once we were a free country local people often rebelled against the idea of being taxed to the point of spending time in debtors prison because they could not pay the taxes. On this site the last battle in Shays rebellion took place. I was very tempted to camp on the well mowed grass. It was allowed but I knew that Hawkeye was 0.87 miles ahead of me so I hiked on.

19:40. Finally a Resting Place

I found him comfortably nestled into his Hamic and actually managed to trip over one of his tent stakes as I walked by. I decided to move on into open ground in order to have room to put up my tent. The hiking guide mentioned a small dirt road and a good place to hike so I found a flat spot and pitch my tent it was a large grassy area which I could see the farmland below. Once I got in the tent I pulled out my phone and pulled up the app for Hiking to read about the area. The first entry in the log was most probably written by the property owner and he said “this dirt road is actually a driveway please do not camp here.” Whoops! My tent was up and it was late. I resolved that I would make sure to have the tent down by 5:30 the next morning. It was the perfect spot but I would surely need to ‘sneak on’.

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