Left today at the last minute I am allowed as pretty much every other place I have stayed. I don’t remember when that was exactly, but the first photo I took for the day was at 10:46am.
Met up with Young Gandalf close to the top who did the slack pack the opposite direction (Side Note: The hostel from last night, if I have not mentioned this before, uses a scare tactic to slack-pack southbound). He slept above me at the hostel last night. Showed him some music last night, but he seemed more interested in his basketball podcasts. He used to play basketball if I did not mention that before. He seemed very happy with his decision to slack pack. He was telling me about the hike ahead. Because of the good stretch of weather, last night he mentioned spending as long as he could in the Whites, while I was more interested in doing more mileage, taking advantage of the weather in a different way. This was the last time I saw Young Gandalf.
Got to the summit and thought of a neat t-shirt idea: A picture of a mountain with the text, “Get Over It” though it likely has already been done.
Super chilly up top.
Ran into some Yale orientation students. They seemed interested that I was a thru-hiker and were asking about which order they should walk in.
As I mentioned earlier, Hikers Welcome hostel, the hostel I stayed at the previous night will use scare tactics to scare you into slack packing with them south bound instead of north bound. You really don’t need to be worried if your careful. I am an example that it is doable, but the hike down will tedious. If there is a chance of rain, slack-packing or even zeroing is a good idea. The trek down I encountered partially wet wooden steps bolted into the slick rock terrain alongside a waterfall. Some of the steps were broken off, meaning there was a slight possibility that even if I achieved footing, that the step could break. Not a pleasant thought.
I ran into Pheasant Melon, Dozer and Umbrella Face close to the 1800-mile marker before Lost River Road. They seemed done for the day and were setting up camp. I talked with them for a bit and decided I would continue for a bit longer.
I ran into guy around 6pm who said he had hiked the previous year, trail name, Terodactyle and was out giving trail magic by camp site near the parking lot off Lost River Road. We talked a bit about burnt out blogging our experiences (he actually finished his daily blog) and right before I was about to go, he mentioned that today was his last day he’d be in town and offered to eat the rest of his food at his summer house in Lincoln, NH. My first thought, was this is way too good to be true, even a little sketchy thinking back. I was alone and not comfortable so I said, hey, I have some friends who decided to camp less than a half a mile back, if they come, I would be comfortable. He asked how many, agreed, I ran back, and grabbed them before they started putting up their tents. Pheasant Melon’s face lit up and they thanked me for coming back for them.
This guy brought us back to what appeared to be a condo, with a room enough for all of us, a fridge full of mostly beer, Jacuzzi, pool, gym showers, and a sauna!
I am a little hazy on the details next due to the lack of photos, but I am pretty sure we went out for dinner. Besides the outlandish level of trail magic this was, this trail angel, Terodactyle was one of the coolest, I’ve come across, to the extent that was courageously kind. It was a pleasure and I hope to cycle that kindness back.