Monday, October 12, 2009

That Tricky Appalachian Trail

So..Cindy already put up a post about our Appalachian trail experiences, but I would like to do one too. So first of all, You need to know that one of the primary reasons Cindy and I went to New England was to do some day hiking on the Appalachian trail. I had always thought it would be a neat thing to do.
First of all here are some don'ts for the Appalachian Trail:
1. Don't think you can just follow the obvious trail. There always seems to be a Big trail in the area that is NOT the Applachian Trail.
2. Don't think that you can get away with regular "tennis" shoes (there is this wet stuff called mud that shows up with great regularity along the way).

Do look UP at trees for the white rectangular blazes that mark the trail. (Who knew?)
So here are Cindy and I at the Appalachian trail sign to commemorate this memorable occasion.

So as we start walking, we are so excited to be here. We are enjoying all the leaves underfoot. Although I did wonder aloud to Cindy how come there were so many less leaves on the trail than next to it. In some places there were almost no leaves at all. Does somebody come along with a leaf blower? Who knows. Anyway, I was amazed to notice apples on the trail as I was walking! This is certainly not something that I would ever see in Arizona, unless it was some careless persons discarded apple core. There were a couple of apparently wild apple trees that were dropping fruit at different places along the trail. How fun!

The farther we went, it started looking more like a road. I was thinking we were pretty lucky that it was so easy to follow. And it was nice to be able to walk along side Cindy instead of behind her, which is my usual place. And it was certainly lovely! But we weren't seeing the things the guide book said we were supposed to see. We began to get a little suspicious.
Here was a minature stop sign on our trail. Cindy is standing right next to it, it wasn't in the back ground. It was kind of cute. I figured it was minature for hikers. Who ever saw a stop sign for hikers before!
The trees were gorgeous though. After about a couple of miles in, we finally ran into a nice man and his dog. He told us we were way off from the Appalachian Trail. We felt pretty silly and disappointed, but enjoyed our walk anyway.
We got quite a laugh at our B and B the next morning telling them how silly we had been! They all knew that we were supposed to hike the trail and had asked us how it went.
So the next day we were all ready to try again. This time in Vermont. (The first time was in New Hampshire)

Here is the sign, so we know we were in the right place.

And here is another, sign as we started so we were absolutely sure we were on the right path! Plus the book described the suspension bridge we would cross. We certainly couldn't miss that!
Here I am on the suspension bridge, so we knew we were in the right spot. It was cold when we started, so I am all bundeled up. Not too much later, I had shed all of the outer layers and was carrying them.
So we head off on the big path again. Before long, it turns into a road and then dead ends. We knew we had some how goofed it up again. Could we be any dumber about this?
When we got back to the bridge area, we saw some "real" hikers (back packs, poles, etc). We asked them about the trail. The one guy thought we were really dumb, and pointed out the white blazes that were painted on the trees. We felt really dumb. So we DID hike on the Appalachian Trail, just not very far. It was still beautiful and we still had a great time.
When we got to the parking lot, we saw this adorable girl. She was a "Through Hiker", going the entire distance from Main to Georgia, 2025 miles!!!! Notice how differently she is equipped than we were! I was concerned about her safety. She said she checked in with her folks daily and had a GPS device with her so they could track her. How interesting it was to talk to her though!
So at least we have a funny story to tell! What else is a trip for than to acquire funny stories to entertain others!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If you all hadn't told us, we would have never known that you all kept losing the trail! Any way, it is a great story and it looks like a fabulous time, if only I had some money....