July 14th Day: 5
Hannah’s Birthday been tryn’ to call or text but there is no service. I Stayed at Antler’s Camp Site last night. Beautiful. I could see the sun set and sun rise from my camp site. I ate lunch today at Cooper Brooke Falls. There was a perfect swimming but it was a bit too chilly. Continued on and made it to a site 3.6 miles before I wanted to stop. East Branch Lean-to is awesome. Big w/ sun roofs. Bob + John are here. Both great guys. Gave me food they had left over. And cooked me some pasta.
I fell real bad today but praise God I’m fine. Down Hill, face first, Pack over head near and between Rocks.
Battles of the day: Why cant I do whats Fun?
Falling in the woods is a humorous sounding thing until it happens to you. At this point is when the trail began to get difficult and really begin to bear down hard on my soul.
It had rained in Maine every single day in June, the only “days” they could say that it didn’t were because they added together the brief hours that the rain had subsided. It left the one hundred mile wilderness in a condition that is hard to describe. Creeks turned into rivers, the trail turned into a bog, and every single root was exposed and as dangerous as black ice. There are no bridges over the rivers in Maine because the winters are so harsh that each time they build one it gets ripped to shreds. So because of the rain, the streams we were to cross were more like white water. slip once, your either off the edge of a waterfall or floating down stream, whatever the case, your journey is immediately over.
The trail condition was as if I was trying to walk through a half foot of mire at all times. shoes and legs were caked with mud. But that wasn’t the worst part. Bog logs, rock hoppin’, and wet roots. Bog logs are in areas that the trail is normally muddy, however because of the rain the dry spots became muddy and the muddy places became swamp. Before I knew the untold dangers of bog logs I would blindly balance my way across them. But they move, they sink, they give out. Same with rock hopping, it would remind you of crossing a river on exposed stones, or playing a 8 hour game of “don’t touch the lava”. But the terrible thing is sometimes mud can look like a rock, or a rock can be loose or even covered in a type of moss you have never seen before.
All this to say that falling flat on ones face, smashing limbs on rocks, in enough mud and grime to cover ones body happened a lot. The first time I fell I still remember laying there embarassed, in extreme pain, tangled up in my pack and trekking poles with a 47 pound back on my back and I couldn’t get up. It was humiliating, mentally degrading. I thought I was tough, I thought I was a man, some moncho sport player,and I can’t get off the ground, and can’t keep my feet. I laid there and screamed for help, cursed, and finally gave up. Just worked my way around inch by inch and unbuckled my pack rolled it off and prayed. Got back up and started hiking again
I fell again ten minutes later.
at times I fell down mountains in the rain. skin grinding against bedrock.
I fell so many times that eventually instead of swearing or cursing, I began to thank the Lord. Thank him that it wasn’t worse then it was. Cuz I was still hiking wasn’t I? I’m still Alive right? Ahh, the slow breakdown, the renewing of the mind.