This morning we met Keith's parents and Swamprat for a great breakfast in the hotel restaurant. We all stayed at the White Wolf Inn inStratton, Maine. They had come yesterday and once again helped us take care of resupply. They also picked up Swamprat when he left the trail yesterday, and brought him to town. After Swamprat arrived, we all had lunch and went back to the town of Rangeley to grocery shop. The store in Stratton was just too small, and carried none of the food we usually eat.
I had already done laundry before Keith's folks arrived, and so after we repackaged our resupply, we could relax for a bit. I must say, I was quite spoiled because the owner of the hotel and restaurant eats gluten-free, and so they had GF pasta, pizza, bagels, and desserts. I ate like a queen in Stratton!
The town of Stratton really doesn't amount to much - three hotels, a small market, sporting goods store, and gas station, and that's about it. It sort of reminded me of the small town in the old TV show, Northern Exposure. Do any of you remember that show??
After the awesome breakfast, during which Keith's mom remarked that she couldn't believe how much we were eating (but she understood why), Richard and Emilie took us back to the AT, and we headed north once again, this time with only 188.2 miles to go to the end. Matter of fact, about 4 miles from the road, we would pass 2000 miles hiked!!!
We were hitting some well known mountains today, known in Maine as the Bigelows. We would also be climbing Avery Peak. We were in for quite a treat, because the weather turned out just perfect, and the visibility was amazing. We were treated to amazing views of the lakes below - Rangeley and Flagstaff. There were also mountains all around us in every direction.
We had such a huge breakfast, that we didn't get hungry til late, and so we ended up eating our lunch on the very top of Avery Peak. I sat up there extra long, really savoring the view, because this could possibly be our last mountaintop view til we reach Mt. Katahdin.
We finally left Avery, then crossed over Little Bigelow, and headed to the Little Bigelow Shelter to camp. We arrived there right at nightfall, and ended up getting water in the dark, which was not a good thing. It was a steep climb down to the water, and wearing Crocs and headlamps, it made it pretty tricky.
We got into the tent, began cooking, and right away a tiny gray mouse showed up right next to Keith's stove. He just stood there looking at Keith, until Keith shined his headlamp on him, and then he zoomed away. He was really funny, almost like he was showing up, expecting us to invite him in for supper. Later on, we were falling asleep, and I heard something on the tent. It was our furry little friend again, this time climbing up on top of the tent,obviously trying to find the door. I gently pattedn the inside of the tent, and he went flying. Later on during the night, he woke me up two more times, and we repeated the mouse acrobatics. At least he never did try to make a hole and come into the tent.
- Steady and F100