2019-06-05 at 14:49 #7431
TU 05-28 Horns Pond Lean-to 3,151′ – hike 5.6 mi, drive 29.4, drive 251.5 mi
Night at Horns Pond Lean-to at 3,151′. Recently constructed 2 shelters. I am in one and a group of 9 students in another.
Last day of the trip, but there is a long road ahead.
Wake at 5:50, start matching at 6:40 without any breakfast.
There are 5.6 miles of hiking ahead – mostly down.
First break at a local summit overlooking Horns Pond 0.3 miles away from shelter. View is fantastic. Complete stillness. But the night was very cold. It is still only +1°C (34°F). All clothes are on.
After reaching a local peak of 3,365′, trail is now going steeply down. On several occasions made a wrong turn and lost trail. Every time have to re-trace the steps and look for trail markers.
Internet is working. I just learned that I was assigned 200 shares of AAPL – my thoughts are slowly drifting away from wild scene.
08:50 – near Cranberry pond I’ve reached a junction with Bigelow Range Trail – not even 2 miles in. There is absolutely no hunger or thirst.
10:25 a small break – discovered a blister on left thumb. Time to finally take off several layers of clothing and put on a fresh pair of socks.
10:34 reached Cranberry Stream campsite. Trail flattening out now and turning watery and muddy. Some sections are just endless puddles of water. But it is basically flat now.
By 11 AM crossed the river over a significant bridge and couple of roads. Someone lost Garmin GPS watch, but I am too focused to care. Only 0.9 miles remains to highway.
By 11:34 I am on highway and see my car. +11°C. No time for celebration, and by 11:39 I am driving back to my bike. I would follow twists and turns of the road that I did 5 days ago while on the bike.
By 12:27 I’ve reached the worst stretch of the road – littered with rocks and branches, may be intentionally. Many corrugated culverts (large metal pipes underneath the road) are exposed and twisted with sharp edges. Very unpleasant. I would get out of the car and examine how to cross with as little damage as possible.
12:49 road turn treacherous with sticking out boulders, but I keep going – very slowly, very carefully, but always forward.
Finally, by 12:57 I am on a better road – Carrying Place Rd. Now, I just need to avoid large potholes.
I arrive to Appalachian Trail crossing with Otter Pond Rd. at 13:21. It took me 1:40 (29.5 miles) on the car. A slow drive indeed. But the other alternative was a 63-miles loop.
Bike is safely in place; I can start driving home. No cell signal though.
14:57 stop at Subway for a double toasted sandwich in Skowhegan, ME. I am returning to civilization.
At Hannaford (15:42) I am buying fruits and seem like forgot my umbrella of many years in the cart. The rain was deceivingly starting and ending all at the same time.
I could have reached home sooner, but slow Boston traffic forces me to reroute to get the gas (19:05). Calculated range remaining – minus *Zero.
19:25 – after 250 miles I arrive home to Boston. Total odometer reading for the trip – 513 miles.
TH 05-23 Boston – drive 232 mi – bike 29.5 mi – hike 0.7 mi
FR 05-24 Pierce Pond Lean-to 1,167′ – hike 11 mi
SA 05-25 West Carry Pond Lean-to 1,311′ – hike 8.5 mi
SU 05-26 Little Bigelow Lean-to 1,801′ – hike w/o backpack 5.4 x 2 mi
MO 05-27 Little Bigelow Lean-to – hike 11 mi through 4,000′ with snow
TU 05-28 Horns Pond Lean-to 3,151′ – hike 5.6 mi, drive 29.4 to bike, drive 251.5 mi
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