27 , 1983 Saturday (308.8 mtg) From
Gonzo!s Appalachian Trail journal
today in Gorham, NH seven or eight miles up the trail to the road
crossing, and then a few miles into town via Route 2.
Leaving Imp Shelter, I climbed steeply to the summit of Mt. Moriah
while bits of the song kept entering my consciousness. No matter
how hard I tried, I could not get the song out of my head as I hiked
."And they call the wind Moriah." Dipping down
and then back up to Middle Moriah Mountain, I began the descent
to the road along the Rattle River Trail beside Rattle Brook. The
miles flew by quickly as it was mostly gradual downhill and easy
hiking. I flew by Rattle River Shelter and waved to its' occupants
as I went by. At Route 2, the road to Gorham, I found another hiker
hitching to Gorham. Now there were two attempting to hitch. That
makes life more difficult. We eventually resorted to waving down
a van using a pleading "why not?" gesture and were loaded
up for the trip to Gorham. The lady was quite interested in Appalachian
Trail hikes and was on her way to Wisconsin to spend a few days
on a remote island.
Gorham is 3.6 miles off the trail, one of the longest hitches
I have made to reach a post office. But there was more in this
town than just a post office, but the Post office was the first
stop. Once the mailing was accomplished, I set out to find the home
with the garage loft set up to provide hikers a place to stay. The
garage was located right along the main drag. I claimed a spot on
the floor and took inventory before heading to the store for supplies.
I treated myself to a chocolate shake and more at the local MacDonalds.
Gorham was full of restaurants catering to the throngs of tourists
that pass through to visit the White Mountains. A good reason for
hikers to stop as well.
There were many thru-hikers congregated at the town, resting a few
days before going for the last push out of New Hampshire and into
the last remaining state: Maine. I found Cathy and Ron again, Nick
Kopec "The Mill Hunkey", Harry
Train (ex-admiral of the Atlantic fleet), and Pauline. Later
Roger Brickner came in looking for Mike Patch. Ray and Lysle, and
their friend, James, the taxi driver were there too. A BIG crowd!
Maximus and "Lan A.T. Hiker" had gone on before I arrived.
Late that afternoon I had a delicious Italian lasagna meal at a
nice restaurant before buying some ice cream to take back and share
with everyone else. I found giving the ice cream away to be unusually
difficult, I guess everyone had been there too long and ate too
much. I eventually got rid of it, but felt badly about having had
so much trouble giving something away that usually people feel lucky
to get. Civilization can soften a person. Later I discovered 50¢
hamburgers and ate once more. I did not record how many I ate.
at the post office I retrieved a package of goodies from Mom, who
had sent it to me August 22 at a cost of $4.22 plus $1.70 for insurance.
She had insured the package because it contained $150 in money orders
she had just purchased for me since I was running out of my stash
on hand. Besides the money, a pair of liner socks, and some Maine
maps and guides, the rest of the package included mostly snacks
- but quite a lot of them (see
list of contents). Agreeing with Mom that Stratton, Maine was
a bit far off the trail, I arranged to have another mail drop at
Caratunk, Maine. I told mom that I would reach Maine either tomorrow,
or the next day probably. I will officially have hiked from Georgia
to Maine! (note
Appalachian Trail Journals ©1983