17 , 1983 Wednesday (450.7 mtg) From
Gonzo!s Appalachian Trail journal
downhill brought us out of the woods and into the outskirts of the
town of Norwich, Vermont this morning. Norwich seemed like a surprisingly
large town, but not as large as Hanover, New Hampshire just on the
opposite side of the Connecticut River. The trail followed a road
out of Norwich down to the interchange on Interstate 91, under the
Interstate, past the merging traffic from vehicles exiting the Interstate,
and finally over the bridge into New Hampshire which was shrowded
in a fog eminating from the river during the early morning hours.
The trail went up the road and straight to the center of town. I
followed the blue-blazed trail to the DOC (Datmouth Outing Club)
building and checked it out. Found out that I could take a shower
at the Alumni Gym and was welcomed by those in the group who
knew what we were - thru-hikers on The Appalachian Trail. I
then made my way to the Talbard House, one of the fraternities on
Greek Row that supposedly accepted hikers. Dropping my gear off
there, I then headed back to the legendary Thayer Hall for lunch.
The college cafeteria was known as the place to eat for hikers in
town. For one price you could go in and eat all you wanted from
a wide selection of foods. As you can imagine, I got my share, and
then went for supplies and a visit to the post office. At the post
office I sent some food to the Summit of Mt. Washington, many days
down the trail in the heart of the White Mountains.
Not really being comfortable sleeping at the Frat house (if I was
indeed even able to get some sleep at the house), and examining
my schedule for the next few days, led me to the realization that
I probably should move on so I could get my maildrop at Glencliff
on Saturday. I packed up my gear and at 4 o'clock in the afternoon
walked out of Hanover and ascended toward Velvet Rocks.
Somewhere near the Etna-Hanover Center Road I ran into Wade
Skelton going southbound! I had met him in the Smokies while
I was still with Jim. We had spent the night at Mt. Collins Shelter
together. He had continued on, but decided to "Flip Flop"
- the term used to describe those who hitch to the northern terminus
midway through their hike and complete their journey hiking south.
This usually is done to allow the hiker to finish the trail by avoiding
the cutoff day for climbing Mt Katahdin, or at least avoiding snowy
weather in Maine. If you do not happen to climb Katahdin by October
14, you may not be allowed to since they close the park to camping
after that day. I was under the impression that you could not finish
if you arrived after that date. Apparently that is when they consider
bad weather time to begin. Now I know that the park is only closed
to overnight camping after that date, but hikers can climb if the
weather is good.
At some unspecified spot between the Etna-Hanover Center Road and
Moose Mountain is where I camped for the night. I more or less just
plopped along the trail, and set up my tarp, hoping it would not
it didn't. Mileage today between 12 - 15 miles.
mother went to the post office today and bought $150 in money orders
to be sent to me. Five $20's and one $50. (see
Appalachian Trail Journals ©1983