Gilligan on the AT Revisited: 07-Oct-1993

Date October 7, 2008

This is a 5-month long series of blog posts that are the entries in my journals written on most evenings as I hiked the Appalachian Trail in 1993. The journal entry appears first — indented — and then any additional commentary from my 15-years-removed perspective follows.

10/7/93 – Thur.

Julie tomorrow!

Warmer today — hiked in shorts and T-shirt all day.

I’m staying with The Mayor, who I’ve been following since North Carolina, and Tom/”Trimmer,” who is just hiking The Wilderness.

We’ve been laughing a lot, and that’s about all I have to write. This may be it for a while.

Hmm. “This may be it for a while.” As it turns out…that was a lonnnnnngggg while. It was the last entry in the journal. I’ll do a “recollection” of the next two days just from my memory, and then we’ll call this little project done!

I do clearly remember this last night before I hit Baxter State Park. Specifically:

  • The shelter was one of the “old” ones — called “baseball bat shelters” because the floors were made of 3-4″ logs nailed down next to each other; these were extremely uncomfortable, but were a throwback to the days when hikers (of which there were dramatically fewer) would cut down boughs of evergreens near the shelter and use them to make a mattress
  • “The Mayor” was something of a sadist. I’d heard less-than-enthusiastic reviews of him all up and down the trail. Then, he spent all evening when I finally met him with a pile of small rocks that he used to try to throw at and kill mice. He cackled borderline maniacally every time he got a direct hit.

And, another late clarification: “The Wilderness” and “The 100-Mile Wilderness” — mentioned in the past few posts, and refer to the same thing. The last roughly 100 miles (northbound) of the A.T. are the most remote stretch of the trail. It’s the section from Monson, ME, to Mt. Katahdin, which crosses no paved roads (there are a variety of logging roads that the trail crosses). The terrain is relatively flat, and there are occasional sections of the trail where you can see Mt. Katahdin — clearly — which is pretty neat. It’s a great way to wrap up the trail

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