AT 2017: Day 157, East B Hill Road (Andover) to Sawyer Brook

Ain't it just like the night to play tricks when you're tryin' to be so quiet?

Ferns on the trail

The day came a little too soon this morning.

Some of the hikers staying at The Human Nature Hostel last night didn’t seem to notice when the rest of us went to bed. They remained noisy well after hiker midnight.

To be sure, if any one of us had mentioned it to them, I’m sure they would have quieted down. No one did.

Everyone must have been like me, too tired to care and figured sleep would come soon. Unfortunately for me, it didn’t.

DateFriday, September 15, 2017
WeatherSunny with a high temperature in the upper 70s
Trail ConditionsSome rocks and roots, and occasionally overgrown
Today's Miles7.5
Trip Miles1921.2

Then this morning we had to be up early and ready to go. Yukon said he would be picking us up at 7 a.m. to take us to the other house for breakfast.

We had to be nearly all packed by then because there wouldn’t be much time to pack later. We would be stopping by the hostel again only briefly before Yukon would take us back to the trail.

Kimchi at The Human Nature Hostel

While Yukon prepared breakfast, Kimchi worked on something special for us. She helps Yukon run the hostel. She asked us last night to send to her information and a photo. This morning she was assembling what we sent and printing that in the form of a trading card.

Although I didn’t know Kimchi before last night, I knew of her. While she was hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2015, she was one of the trail correspondents in a now-defunct podcast I listened to called Sounds of the Trail.

Stack of pancakes at The Human Nature Hostel

Yukon prepared stack after stack of giant blueberry pancakes. He kept them coming until we all had our fill.

Gravity's trading card

As we were finishing breakfast, Kimchi passed out our copy of our trading cards. A second set was put into a binder, which Yukon used as a record of who stayed at the hostel.

My card featured a photo of me standing on Mt. Washington. Kimchi had laminated it, which made it easier to keep nice while being carried in my pack for the rest of the hike. It was a nice keepsake.

Overgrown trail

After a quick stop back at the hostel to finish packing, we then rode Yukon’s mini-bus back to Andover, where Uncle Puck was dropped off at the post office. He was hoping to pick up a package there.

With all of that, the time was nearly 10 a.m. before we finally reached the trailhead and began hiking.

The trail wasn’t difficult to hike, though it started out overgrown with weeds.

Surplus Pond

After a couple miles the trail took us past Surplus Pond. We had gone over a mountain of the same unusual name yesterday.

They were so-named because townships were named this way when small blocks of land were left over after survey lines were drawn.

The trail continued to be easy for the next few miles as it made a long and gradual climb up Wyman Mountain.

View from Wyman Mountain

The top of the mountain was tree-covered, but there was a small opening just below the summit that offered a narrow view of distant mountain ranges.

Going downhill from there was a bit more difficult and resulted in a couple mishaps.

Stick broke a section of a trekking pole and I was stung by a bee on my left arm. Neither one had much effect on our hiking, and we continued on to Sawyer Brook.

Dinner with Tengo Hambre and Stick in the Woods at Sawyer Brook

I arrived there at 3 p.m., a few minutes after Stick and Tengo. Though this spot was not an official campsite and there wasn’t a shelter here, they found a picnic table.

Once again, as it happened two days ago, we were faced with deciding to stay or go on.

Looking at the trail guides, the next mountain had a very steep profile. We were concerned this would keep us on a difficult section of trail after dark. Our other choice was to stay put here at least three hours earlier than we normally want to stop.

Maybe the nice campsite with a picnic table swayed our decision, but we decided to stay.

It had been a warm day, but I thought the night would cool off, so I decided to sleep in my sleeping bag tonight. That soon proved to be too warm and I had to switch to my quilt.

Even then, I had trouble sleeping. Considering I didn’t get much sleep last night, this was a surprising disappointment.

Ain't it just like the night to play tricks when you're tryin' to be so quiet?
Sitting here stranded, though we're all doin' our best to deny it
And Louise holds a handful of rain, temptin' you to defy it
Lights flicker from the opposite loft
In this room the heat pipes they cough
The country music station plays soft
But there's nothing, really nothing, to turn off
Just Louise and her lover so entwined
And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind


"Nothing to tell now. Let the words be yours, I'm done with mine."ref.