Wasington, Madison, fifty shades of gray

Apparently I’m on vacation, because I’m at another Hut. What the actual fucque?

I got out of LOTC (which has apparently always been “Lakes”; I just managed to misread it for a decade or two, d’oh) at about 8 AM. Dear god. But I was only trying to get to treeline beyond Mt. Madison—roughly 9 miles—then find a stealth spot.

I didn’t make it. I made it roughly 7.5 miles in fog and rain (official visibility 104 feet; visibility with glasses, 10 feet 😀). Wet talus, high winds. I suck, but it was a hard day, and my bad knee is throbbing like hell. I stopped at Madison Hut for water, they surprisingly had a bunk, boom. I’ll do the wet talus descent in the morning, when I’m fresh and my knee’s had a chance to rest. Right now, I’m limping and wishing I could take vitamin I.

I’m picking up a resupply box tomorrow at Pinkham, then climbing the first Wildcat. And I might have a plan for device charging, the night after that. We’ll see. And wow, Maine in just a few days!

No pics. It was a rainy white-out all day. I couldn’t even find the trail up on Mt. Washington. (Then again, I couldn’t find the trail a lot today. I was all over Guthooks for most of the day, when it wasn’t rainy.)

OW, my knee! 😣 Just venting.

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OK, it’s the next day! And I’m at the Pinkham lodge hostel. Cheaper than the huts, thank god, and I can recharge my electronics.

What a freaking day. Madison was terrible. Not scary, but slow and endless, foggy, with high winds. Not dreadfully high, but maybe 30, 35 mph gusts and 20, 25 steady. But it’s done. Madison is done. Forever.

At the moment I’ve still got 2 days in my piggy bank… barely. I can’t even think about it. I’ve got two funny bunkmates, my resupply is here, and tomorrow I’ll just go as far as I can. I should be able to get on trail by 7:30—late, but better than the Huts.

Wildcats! Also rain.

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Wildcat!

Wildcat Peak D done! Done in the continuing rain and blustery wind and fog! That was some hairy crap, there. I’m camped at the worst stealth site ever, warming up from the icy wind chill and listening to the rain on the tent. I’m glad to get back to my early starts. Tomorrow’s supposed to be partly sunny. Hopefully the rocks and roots will have dried out a bit, and I’ll do better.

Another day in Paradise!

Huts be crazy in the rain

I forgot how nuts these huts can be—especially this one, I think, because you can practically drive to it. There are many, many kids here, most under 10. At 4 PM, there are also a handful of thrus waiting to angle for work for stay. I don’t know any of them. Robin Hood, Sponge Bob. They knew Ting and were flabbergasted to hear he’s out.

Apparently the missing hiker and the dead hiker are one and the same. I think.

So. It did not rain last night! That was great, because whatever else happened, my tent will be dry next time I need it (tomorrow night). I was on trail at 5:45, and it was another vertical type of morning, getting up to the Presidential ridgeline. I was going back and forth between calling it Spidermanning and Mountain Goating, and I finally settled on spidergoating. I’d sing as I climbed: “Spidergoat, Spidergoat, does whatever a Spidergoat can.”

It was overcast for most of the day, until I got to within a quarter mile of Lakes of the Clouds. (Didn’t it used to he “Lake”? Or have I been misreading for years?) Then the sky opened up, and with no trees for cover I was wet within minutes. Ah, well. You lose some. 😁

Tomorrow: Washington, etc, in shitty weather. Wind gusts up to 55, but hopefully I’ll be past Madison by then. I’m only aiming to get past treeline. Breakfast here isn’t until 7, so it’ll be a late start to get 10 miles. On trail by 8, I’ll finish maybe by 6:30, if I stop up on Washington to buy food. Argh.

Man, it’s crazy noisy here.