Saturday, September 20, 2014

100 Mile Wilderness

The 100 Mile Wilderness is not like what I think of out West: desolate, empty, vast.  It is actually busy with road crossings, abundant with lakes, and active with many uses. 

For me, it is the last hurdle in this epic journey.  It has mountain ridges to traverse, bogs to cross, and miles to move.  I don't like hiking dawn til dusk but, to pull in 20 mile days that's exactly what I've done.  Daylight is gone by 7:30 pm.  I've traveled much of this alone.  I found myself between hiker bubbles, again.  I've grown use to this.  I still prefer to hike alone yet camp with others.

The terrain in the guide book may show flat.  Don't let flat mean easy, some of the easiest is the up an down.  The rocks and roots give way to mud.  Bog bridges are often rotten under foot or moisture soaked. They can be slick traps over mud knee deep.

Did you know Maine is another word for wetland?  I'm joking, the land of Maine is truly stunning and words nor photo can describe what I see.  Next time I come I may sky blaze (take a plane) a section to view the many lakes I've hiked around from above.

The 100 Mile Wilderness begins at Monson and ends at Abol Bridge.  Monson a small town on a lake with two great hostels and an even better bakery, Pete's Place.   Abol Bridge a small convenience store with grill in route to Baxter State Park.

In this region, I've caught glimpses of Mount Kathadin.  I've watched the mountain go from a blue lump on the horizon to seeing defining features.  As one reads this, I'll be on Mount K celebrating this journey's end.  This journey is hardly over though, I believe it's just begun.

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