Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Friday, May 11

Distance: 8.6 miles
Weather: Warm, muggy

I hiked a lot of paths and a lot of rocks to Duncannon, PA. Some hillsides were completely rock, with steps made by laying rocks vertically to enable a person to go down. I was amazed to think how much work this took the people who did it.

The Trail goes right through Duncannon. Rocky and I had great subs in a gas station/deli. I've been out only a few days and already fresh food tastes fantastic. We got a ride to a grocery store from a fellow hiker, whose girlfriend had met him there and was driving him around. Trail Angel Mary, the first person I met the first day, lives in Duncannon so I got to see her again. We were in Duncannon for about 3 hours. Stopped in at the Doyle Hotel, a Trail tradition, about a hundred years old. We didn't stay, but I bought a few ounces of denatured alcohol for my soda-can stove. Then a long, long road walk out of town, over a bridge over the Susquehanna River. A hawk harassed us. She probably thought we were harassing her and her nest.

After the bridge was the start of more climbing. I don't know how the acquisition of 2 pounds of supplies can turn into 10 new pounds of packweight. It felt heavy, and the air was hot, and my feet and legs were tired. More dicey rock scrambling, including choices: Step in the hole or on the poison ivy?

Clarks Ferry Shelter was on a slope. I just hung my hammock between two trees and was all set. There were two men, Cane (as in walks-with-a-cane, although he uses hiking poles like everyone else) and Milkshake. Then a troop of Boy Scouts arrived, but left when they saw there was no place to pitch a dozen tents. They camped uphill from us, probably right on the Trail, and kept clomping past us down to the spring and back, but they made an effort to be unobtrusive.

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