My last couple days hiking in New York were made a little more special thanks to my friend and hiking buddy, "Plant Man". He and I hiked together last before Chris came to visit in Virginia. He then got ahead of me. However, Plant Man lives in New York near the trail, and decided to take a couple weeks off to rest his knees and feet of hiking ailments. I got an invitation from him to join him in his home for a warm shower, good food, and comfy bed. Of course I didn't pass up that offer!
Instead of staying at the overpriced B&B as I had planned, I arranged to stay at Plant Mans home. I was able to get my mail drop and resupply with extra goodies for the coming week. Roboticus came with me, and at the last minute with the rainy weather, four other hikers joined in as well. Gingersnap, Oliver Twist, Sonshine, and Charlie Brown were also invited in with open arms.
A couple weeks earlier, I had some equipment fails. I had a strap break on my backpack, and one of my trekking poles busted. Osprey sent me a brand new backpack, and Leki sent me a new pole, free of charge. I also ordered a new pair of shoes. All this new equipment met me at Plant Man's home. It was like Christmas morning! I was so happy to have my new gear, and my feet were glad to have some shoes with tread on them. My tires were bald! I got the exact shoe that I had before since the old ones had been so faithful to me for the last 1160.6 miles. here is what those miles can do to a shoe...
Connecticut was beautiful to hike through. Two days after leaving Plant Man's home, it was raining again. I didn't care though, because I was excited to have my good friend, Elisa meet me on the trail. Elisa did the first week of the trail with me, and was back to give me some company. It always rains when she and I hike together, so the rain seemed appropriate. We had a great time! Elisa hiked with me through the rest of Connecticut, and into Massachusetts.
Elisa did long miles with me despite not having hiked mountains for four months. Our last night of camping, we decided to push past the shelter to make it so we wouldn't have too many miles to do the next day. We "stealth camped" on some rocks with a nice view. We weren't very stealthy though, since we were right by the trail. We figured it wouldn't be an issue unless a ridge runner came by, or something. Well, guess who decided to come by! Haha! Caught red handed by the sweetest ridge runner around. She thought it was a great place too, so she let us stay. We made sure to be out early in the morning and left no trace of our camping.
Chris and I have had a great weekend together. We went to a semi private yoga class last night where I was able to relax and stretch some of my sore areas.
"It is enough right now to taste one moment of peace. Of course I want more, but at least the door is open.
It is enough to draw a conscious breath, and let my hands relax, fingers releasing their tight grasp on things outside of my control.
It is enough to to shed a layer of stress as if taking off a jacket or pair of too-tight shoes.
Ease of being has to start somewhere. This breath is my first step."
Miles hiked: 1524.4
Miles to go: 659.8