the heat is on

Hey guys! I have reached Kent, CT and am so excited to have just over 700 miles left in my journey. In just two days I’ll be in Mass. and on Friday I’ll be taking some time of the trail in Boston. Lately I have been hiking with Nero, Shoefly, Charlie, Estero, Downhill, and of course, Tiger Lilly. My time in town is brief today, so for now, I will leave you with one of my earlier journal entries…

June, 16, 2011

Today is an absolutely lazy zero day. It wasn’t planned you see, but last night, 2 people showed up to the hostel and said that they would take us all to Straudsburg, PA. Of course, when we heard about this impending event, naturally we decided to take  a zero day.

Yesterday was an easy day; we only did 16 miles from Wind Gap to Delaware Water Gap. It seems that lately the heat has been unbearable. It makes me very vulnerable to dehydration as I sweat buckets and buckets of water. Furthermore, it causes me some serious chafing as so much salt it released onto the skin. If ind it so difficult to stay hydrated.

I know it seems that I am complaining, but it is very difficult to sustain this kind of climate. Two days ago we stayed in Palmerton, PA and then hiked 20 miles to Wind Gap, PA. This was probably the most miserable day on the trail, aside from day 2 on the whole trail.

Outside of Palmerton there is a giant rock scramble, one so steep that you have to put your trekking poles away and use your hands to climb up. That day the weather was said to be in the upper 90’s. Knowing that the sun was going to bake the rocks we all woke up at 4am and started hiking at 5 am. The rocks were arguable the easiest part of the day…

We hit the ridge line and the scenery was barren. Surely I wasn’t in PA, but New Mexico or Arizona. Apparently that area was a superfund site, an area that is environmentally depleted and the government funds it restoration. It was upsetting to see how PA’s industries had destroyed the mountains. All of the springs in that area suffered from zync contamination. It’s a good thing we’re all zync deficient! The sun beat down on us at 5:30 in the morning and continued to bake us well into the day.

The trail was exceptionally rocky and incredibly tedious to navigate. I traversed the landscape like a zombie. That particular area had no water sources for fifteen miles, so I packed out 3 liters. plenty for 15 miles. Too bad I drank it all by mile 9. Luckily Chaninsaw had some extra water and gave it to me. I guess I was sweating so bad that I couldn’t stay hydrated.

I was very happy to reach the road outside of Wind Gap. I hitched a ride into town and stayed with all the guys at the Travel Inn.


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