AT17 - Day 2 & 3 Have't Found My Groove Yet

Day 2: 8/5 48.3-95.4 Cloud Pond Lean-to

            The pack already felt much lighter in the morning at 6:00 and I was able to run the last bit of flats before some very nasty punchy climbs.  The day became socked it, which kept me cool but the darkness drains my vitality.  I imagine it as a reverse “Lord of the Rings” While NoBo, I felt like Frodo heading into the darkness and destroying the ring.  SoBo, it feels more like I have cast the ring into the fires of Katahdin and am heading home to the Shire (Springer).  Lord of the Rings references already, losing it! Lost! Man this guy is loopy. 
I was really hoping to get past the 100 mile mark today, but I failed to remember how difficult the climbs were in this area.  Feeling fatigued, I thought to call the day a bit early and stay near a shelter in case of a nasty storm.  As I was setting up my camp, it started to poor.  Then lightning flashed and thunder boomed.  Damn, exactly what I was worried about.  The trail quickly became flooded.  I cannot fathom how much rain and how quickly it falls in Maine.  So I packed up quick and huffed it to Cloud Pond which I arrived at around 20:15.  I got drenched on the way there and really just put a damper on the day.  I got to the shelter and was able to sneak into a tiny spot (not really a ton of room for another guy) and eight other not so please shelter mates.  Oh well.  I slept safe and out of the storm.

Day 3: 8/6 95.4-136.5 Bald Mountain Brook Lean-to

            Last night really shook me.  I slept in because of the night and to avoid the remaining drizzle, but still took off at 6:00.  I was passing Monson today and had a chance to bail and restart.  I could also trudge on to Caratunk and restart.  This was always a thought and an option if things did not start off well.  However, I know how I am (being bipolar), and I can get very excited starting a journey and very depressed when it stops.  I was worried about this.  I decided to keep going, because I thought I had a pretty decent start and besides the rain, things were going smoothly.  So I moved well throughout the day.  After this morning, it did not rain at all, but I was never able to get my shoes, socks or feet dry.  There were seven river crossings and often very wet parts of the trail.  That’s Maine for ya.  Moving well all afternoon, I reached the top of Moxie Bald just after sunset, ate dinner on the descent and brushed teeth.  I hit the shelter about 20:20.


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