Gentian Pond

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Aug 28 , 1983 Sunday (301.2 mtg) From Gonzo!s Appalachian Trail journal

Nick, Cathy and Ron got up early this morning, ate breakfast early, and then staked out a spot along the road in front of the garage as their hitching location and tried for a while to get a ride back to the trail. Not much luck. No one would stop. Then Ray and Lyle came by in a car driven by James, their taxi driver friend, who stopped, picked them up and took them to the trailhead. At first I thought I should "get out of Dodge" with them, until I found out that Ray and Lyle were planning on eating the Sunday morning brunch at a local restaurant before continuing on their journey. This meant that I could probably get a ride later as they were taken to the trailhead. The brunch did not begin until 11:30, so I would get a late start today. The owners did not know what hit them after all the thru-hikers went thru the line. The food was excellent, and provided everything but cold cereal. Afterwards I did get a ride back to the trailhead from James, and set out up the side of Mt. Hayes from a point directly across the road where the trail had come down from Mt Moriah.

I crossed the Androscoggin River, and waddled down the trail thinking I would only do about six or seven miles this afternoon. The first four miles took me gradually up to the summit of Mt Hayes and then turned off toward Cascade Mountain, a couple of miles away. Then a steep descent into Trident Pass before heading back up, this time toward Wocket Ledges. From there the trail was more level for three miles before heading down to Gentian Pond and the shelter located nearby. I caught up to Cathy somewhere along the level section and frightened her as she thought that I was a moose that was approaching. As I neared the shore of Gentian Pond, I spotted someone sitting on a rock at the edge of the water and thought it to be one of the gang. Following along the shore, I approached and found the person to be a nice looking female reading a book in the solitude provided by the surrounding area. I stopped and struck up a conversation, which lasted a while, and found out her friends were nearby at the shelter. We walked back to the shelter and I hung my pack up. I intended to stay the evening. A few sprinkles of rain began to fall and I then convinced the girls that they should stay at the shelter tonight as well. Darkness was beginning to set in early due to the rain. They decided to stay and that made my evening a lot nicer. I had someone good looking and interesting to talk with. I did not write her name down, but I often wondered years later if this was the star from the movie "Flashdance." I did not seen the movie until later, but she reminded me of her when I saw it. The shelter was rather crowded even though Ron, Cathie, and Nick all slept in tents. Gentian Pond Shelter was the first shelter equipped with a "solar one holer" solar powered outhouse. The solar energy helped decompose the waste. The prevailing weather conditions were too cool to do the job well or quick enough. That is why there are so many trailside bogs in the northeast.

There were females all around the shelter! I went to get some water once and caught a glimps of one washing up with her top off. Although her back was facing me, it was too much for a man who has spent so long in the woods mostly in the company of males.

Gonzo! Appalachian Trail Journals ©1983

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