Day 72 on the Appalachian Trail

Last night's rain ceased before midnight. When I awoke at 5 am, no clouds. I hit the trail at 6 am, walking several blocks from the hostel to the Interstate 80 bridge over the Delaware River and into New Jersey. The traffic roared by a few yards away as I walked along. After the bridge, I passed by the visitor center for the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area then turned north along a creek. In 4 miles, the Appalachian Trail skirted Sunfish Pond, which appeared to be a natural glacial lake. The trail gained elevation to a ridge, Kittatinny Mountain, covered with modest-sized oaks and hickories with a grassy understory. After a brief descent to a stream, I gained 400 feet of elevation to the Catfish Fire Tower, where I ate lunch. The view from the tower revealed low, forested ridges and a few rural houses (see photo). Half a mile later, I crossed a paved road and found trail magic. Three older women dispensed a hamburger, a banana, an ear of sweet corn, and water. After a delightful conversation, I pushed on toward my goal for the day of a campsite by a stream about 9 miles farther. Happily, most of the day's walking featured smooth, old logging roads. I found some rocky areas but nothing like Pennsylvania. The sun shone all day, but the tree canopy kept me from getting too hot. About 5 pm, I arrived at my destination. As I started to set up camp, fellow through hiker Trotter came by and camped next door. I really enjoy having company in the evening. Trotter related her story of getting Lyme disease. Today was a welcome change from the past week. My mental state improved markedly. I'm looking forward to the rest of New Jersey (50 miles) then New York. Today's miles -22.2. Total miles - 1315.2.

No Comments Yet.

Leave a comment