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2020-07-17 at 13:52 #7903Udar GromovKeymaster
07:14 – wake up at Bromley shelter. All is great. The rest of crew is still sleeping. It is hot already.
07:32 – first pictures of the day – sun rays breaking through the leaves on the way to privy.
08:38 – start from Bromley Shelter. On the way down I meet very many day-hikers just starting from the parking lot 2 miles down. They are just from their beds, accompanied by their dogs, clutching their water bottles. Some in masks. Holiday traffic, so to speak.
09:32 – route 30/11 parking lot – uneventful. This is apparently a mid-point of the hike where 17.7 mi completed, and 17.5 mi left to go.
09:48 – another 0.5 miles up the trail found a 4WD road that hid an abandoned ski lift equipment hut. Time to relax and have my cold kasha breakfast with a bit of olive oil. Quiet place. Spend some contemplative time here.
11:09 – Continue the hike toward Spruce Peak
11:40 – change from all beige to all blue clothes and yellow socks
12:13 – crossing another 4WD road
12:40 – turn to Spruce Peak Shelter
I see a lady hiker that reports just seeing a mama-bear and 3 cubs that run in opposite directions and one of the cubs climbed a tree. I am getting my camera ready, but I do not encounter any animals.
13:09 – 5.8 mi completed – Comfortably sat on the ground to rest. I make my chess moves. Opponent proposed a tie, but I refused. Afterall, I have a 2-ponds advantage.
13:40 – resume towards Prospect Rock
14:18 – I am at Prospect Rock with a view toward Manchester, VT. Quick rotation of holiday walkers clutching their water bottles. There is a 5.5 miles marker till Stratton Pond shelter.
14:32 – an interesting section on the hike – tail goes on top of a wide utilized forest road and then . . .
14:57 trail turns into a forest again. There are 4.3 miles remains to Stratton Pond. I am entering Lye Brook Wilderness.
15:39 – sit on the ground. Learn the news that referendum in Russia has passed. 66.97% voters showed up, 77.92% of those voted YES. That bring total YES votes to 52.96% – just over the half of all voters. – With that, Putin can stay in power till 2036. Now I really feel that I can reach the Stratton Pond shelter today – miles ahead of my original l plan.
15:53 – continue the last section
16:22 – crossing second brook over a footbridge. This was a possible camp point, but someone is already here, so I am moving on.
17:05 another 2.7 miles completed (12.75 total). Reach the Stratton Pond and plunge into the warm and cold waters. While swimming, notice 3 teenage girls. “Does ‘Hi from Ella’ means anything to you?” – “Yes” – “Well, her group is two day ahead of you” – “Wow! Thank you!” It is amazing that I saw them walking from the pond while swimming. They passed once and then returned as they missed the turn for the tent camping area.
17:33 start very last 0.3 miles to the shelter with a day total of 13.1 mi.
17:44 Shelter already had one guest and several backpacks. It will be total of 6 hikers comfortably spreading in a huge multilevel shelter.
One more (second) swim in the lake.
Gather cold waters from a slow trickling spring with a scoop provided by 2 fellow hikers. The scoop is just a cut of plastic bottle bottom – brilliant.
A large meal for dinner – vegan Backpacker’s Pantry Three Sisters Stew. My titanium stove boiled water 3 times – two for tea and one for stew.
19:08 – I have got so comfortable, I even had to go for water for a second time
19:48 – let the meal begin. The evening camp hours are so fleeting. If you avoid politics, there are plenty of practical matters to discuss or just listen to endless stories and happening from recent memories.
20:28 – time to go to my bank. Half an hour later in a complete darkness one more hiker arrived to climb to the top attic bank – a master suit as we called it.
I had to put on my mosquito net – nights are too warm now, and mosquitoes continue to fly even in the dark. So far, everything works out nicely.
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