Day 79 on the Appalachian Trail

Yesterday evening was so hot that I couldn't get to sleep at 8 pm. Little beads of sweat covered my body. Around 9 pm, the air cooled enough that I could fall asleep. The next morning, with 2 liters of water, I started hiking at 6 am to enjoy a few hours of relative cool. The Appalachian Trail paralleled the Taconic State Parkway for several miles but above the highway on a ridge. The 500-foot climb up Hosner Mountain turned out to be the longest of the day. Mostly, the AT made short ups and downs, interspersed with level trail. At mile 9, I stopped at the Morton Stewart shelter for a water and rest break. In three more miles, I ate lunch on a quality shady rock beside a brook. An hour later, I skirted Nuclear Lake, a glacial basin with no homes along the shore (see photo). At mile 15.8, I arrived at the Telephone Pioneers shelter. I'd contemplated staying there for the night, but the water had dried up. I continued on for 0.7 miles to a county road where a met trail angel Bob. He gave me a cold Gatorade, a banana, and a bag of chips. Sitting in a folding chair was heavenly! Bob told me that about 30 hikers had passed by today. Onward for 2.4 more miles to the Appalachian Trail Metro North train stop. On the way, I met a hiker who recommended Tony's Deli, 0.6 miles south of the train stop, plus I could camp there. But first, I took a cold shower at the Native Landscapes store, 100 yards from the train stop. Much refreshed, I walked to the deli and bought a chicken salad sandwich and a pint of ice cream. I ate dinner then set up my tent on a shady lawn. Other hikers dribbled in. Today's miles - 19.9. Total miles - 1428.3.

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