Friday, October 9, 2015

Getting Warmer/Colder

Closing in on it, "good Lord willin and the creek don't rise" hope to finish in a couple weeks. From the Whites to now near Rangeley ME (Rangeley is known for being half way point between the equator and North Pole) the trail has been absolutely brutal but incredibly beautiful. 
The terrain is insane but I'm hearing aside from Bigelow and Sugarloaf the worst is behind me.
The roller coaster of mountains slows me down to 1 mile per hour 
Slow ups:
N up:
Slower down:
but offers great vistas in between:
And sometimes a place to sit, relax and enjoy:
Anyway, who really cairns?
The cairns are actually signs. 
The "Arctic Zone" is above tree line (either no trees above 8 ft or none period) so the cairns replace the blaze:
SPEAKING OF the blaze, in 2002 NoBo thru hiker Gary Monk (bet he hiked alone bahaha), trail name "Blaze" counted every blaze he passed 80,900. I say there were still only 7 or 8 in the Smokeys but hey that's ancient history.
I've been going thru some old pics that I don't think I shared. This one was a sign that I should either have escargot for breakfast or I really was moving too slow.
Speakin of slow, tho I will forever remain Sparky, I thought of another trail name, Creepy Crawler:
Speakin of makin momma proud, look ma, "crussoo";
What DOD would call "skutah":
Another name could be Jimmy Feral!
I've lost so much weight so fast that the skin of my fingers can't keep up,
Speakin of signs, this one said to go back; right, eyeah, okay, sure, not, indeed:
Speakin of sign:
In moose country. Scat and track all over and in the trail but I haven't seen one yet.
Okay, you decide. Since day one April 9th I have had only one single eating utensil, a titanium spork that fits in a pocket on my JetBoil. I've used it virtually every single day in the woods. It's all I got to scoop the food! Ya feelin me about the spork? Several days ago, woke up at 5am, snoozed till 530, fired up JetBoil for coffee. "WHERE IS SPORKY SPARKY?" I swirled the coffee and Truvia(Christian sweetener) that worked fine but I have no other utensil to eat with. Went thru the pack, sacks and tent, it's gone. Then it "dawned" on me, the very night before, however many nights there have been, I had scoped out the only other two tent sites, there are no other humans mind you, on a rock next to a fire pit I remembered spotting this:
While one technically could make this up, I did not.
Speakin of (aren't u sick of that phrase now haha) food and signs. Check this privy sign out talkin about composting your human waste:
Y'all be likin that humus?
Nummy num num.
I see red:
Do see see a creature?
That was easy. Hey kids, how about a creature double feature? This ones not so easy:
Do you see what I saw?
I also saw signs of spiders:
Thousands of them:
And sometimes just one:
They don't survive if they venture into my space btw.
What every other state calls a shelter:
Maine calls a lean to:
Signs are everywhere, aren't we all always watching, for signs?
I am looking forward to the conclusion of the hike, looking forward to what lies ahead though not too excited about returning to what this devo describes as the unstable world in flux. Perhaps reminders will help to fix the gaze.

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