AT14 Day 49: Roadrunner Baby

7/2 Wednesday
Full Goose->Bethel

Well okay.  Fine, fine, the foot is fine.  Well it doesnt hurt more than what I have become accustom to on the trail, I should say. Away we go, the most fun mile of the course.  Mahoosuc Notch. It is just boulders. Entering it was like going to the land of the living dead. The temperature must have dropped from 75 to 35 instantly. There was snow on the ground. Soo cool. I touched it just to feel home, niiiiice.   I thought about if I was home 10 days ago, I might have been getting face shots in Main Chute.  How sweet the dream! Task at hand Joe, task at hand. I got to work.  And so did mother nature.  I swear it was clear skies, but I could only see a little part of the sky down in the gully of the beast.  Big fat drops splatted the boulders.  By the time I had my rain gear on, it stopped.  Hmm. I guess this is just right of passage I thought. It didn't rain, no. The AT gods were just making sure I got the full experience.  Thanks guys!  It wasn't bad though. It was just a bit of scrambling problems. My mind wondered to my great friend Hangnar.  Hannah, only she is gnarly, so hangnar.  Yes she is a great friend, but I meant she is great!  She also hands down came up with the best line for me being bipolar.  "Sometime you are up and sometimes you are down. But you are all Joe". God I love you Hannah. Hope you are have fun climbing wherever you are this summer. Maybe Ill come visit when I am back in Utah.  Oh yea task at hand. So I got out of the man-eating mythological Mahoosuc Notch. It wasn't bad at all. You aren't going to make time and you might get turned around, but all in all it was a fun mile.  I climbed the Mahoosuc arm which seemed easier than I thought it might be while looking up at the beast.  Maybe a full nights rest did some good. As I start to descend and hopping down big jumps , I began to feel it.  Crap. Its back. Not as bad and now I am babying it, but it is back.  I did what I could to get down fast but I knew it didn't matter. I would have to lay up and figure it out.  As I reached the trail head, there was a lady already in my face asking me if I was Flash.  I said I am. But I really wanted to say I was.  I shouldn't say she was in my face, she probably stayed 10 feet back to avoid my stench. But it felt like she was in my face.  I must have come off as rude, so I must apologize.  I think it was just a bad time for me.   All I wanted to do was be left alone. I felt like such a failure.  I couldn't help but feel angry again, my dad was running his mouth off to strangers. I just wanted to get in the truck and go.  I was embarrassed.  But my dad was rearranging stuff in the bed.  I gave him attitude and he drove off. I thought for good.  I pulled my cell phone out, no service.  Damn. But my dad had stopped across the street down a ways.  He was just moving the truck to get away from people; for me.  I am such an ahole again.    Here he is driving late at night to sleep in a trail head to wait for me.  I apologized for being such a shitty son.  And I was sorry for being a failure. He told me I wasn't and what I had accomplished so far was amazing.  Then he said it.  So what no record, you can still finish. It dawned on me. When I set out , I just wanted to hike the trail.  Granted as fast as I could.  But the record was in the back of my mind.  And only after some days on the trail did I consider even going for the record. Lately I had been so caught up in chasing the record , I had forgotten why I came.  The beauty and the experience. There is nothing more awesome and peaceful than the beauty of the trees , mountains, animals and views.  I had lost that.  And although I am sad and disappointed I wont get the record, it doesn't matter to me. I hiked the trail, saw the beauty, lived the beauty and rode that emotional roller coaster.   ....well I hiked 1918 of 2180 miles.  Close.  But I will see if this foot is a bruise or a fracture and if it will get better ASAP.  I really do have some time to wait around, but it would be nice to finish quick and be home.

 So you can rest easy Mr. Kirk.  I appreciate the kind words earlier! To everyone else who supported me , I love you , you are awesome!  I appreciate that so much.  But don't worry , Ill be back.  It might take a year or a few,  but I know Ill get the itch. And when one itchs, one must scratch.  Maybe Ill even plan it.  I have a ton of knowledge and experience now.  Speaking of which, not bad for my first speedpacking trip? Haha. 

So I will post some pictures shortly maybe add another post to fill in some missed days, now that I have time.  And I will keep you updated on my foot. Hopefully a bruise and Ill be back out there ASAP trying to finish in true Flash style.... Which is.... hmm..... Balls to the wall, emotion filled , eyes closed craziness ????  Sounds good to me. 

One last tid bit: 
As I got in the truck and we sped down the road.  I felt like a kid again, experiencing something for the first time. Driving. I hadn't been in a car for 50 days. I wasn't freaked out. But boy was it weird. My Alta friend, let us just call him "Tulips" said the trail would change me.  He was right.  I look forward to seeing these changes in action.  
So we are speeding down the road ; my dad says, "I got a song for you". Turning on  Bo Diddley's. "Roadrunner ".  He turns to me, says,  "I just use trail runner instead "

So I leave you with ...

 "I 'm a trailrunner baby
And you cant keep up with me
I'm a trailrunner baby
And you cant keep up with me
Well come on lets race
And baby baby you will see"


  1. You are awesome! Love love love this post. You will be back. Please enjoy the rest of the hike. It's amazing out there. Best to you - Deja

  2. Great Hike!
    Likely not the last we hear from you I'm sure- stop by WB if you want some time and say Hi. Got a song right back at ya-

    "One Day" Bjork

    one day
    it will happen
    one day, one day
    it will all come true

    one day
    when you're resdy
    one day, one day
    when you're up to it

    the atmosphere
    will get lighter
    and two suns ready
    to shine just for you

    i can feel it

    one day
    it will happen
    one day. one day
    it will all make sense

    one day, one day
    you will blossom
    one day, one day
    when you're ready

    an aeroplane
    will curve gracefully
    around the volcano
    with the eruption that never lets you down

    i can feel it

    and the beautifullest
    fireworks are burning
    in the sky just for you

    i can feel it

    one day
    one day


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