We Accidentally Climbed a Mountain

This past week, Marco and I and four of our backpacking Eagle Scout friends went on a hiking trip to Vermont. Our goal was the Long Trail, Section 9. Marco and I smugly thought to ourselves that we were beating the system. We were going to get excercise by walking in the woods, this couldn’t possibly be easier.

(Photos from Carolyn)

We were so wrong. Vermont kicked our ass. We pushed ourselves to the limits and climbed several mountains; Baby Stark and Molly Stark Mountain, Burnt Mountain, Mount Ethan Allen, and Marco and I took the bad-weather Alpine Trail around Camel’s Hump.

(Photos from Carolyn)

Our style of hiking was solely focused on not falling off the cliffs and what we can accurately describe as bushwhacking and butt hiking. 

(Photo from Mark)

This is Carolyn. At first I was so relieved to have another girl on the trail. She is a quiet, thin, feminine vegetarian. But on the trail she turned into a monster she-wolf hiking spider monkey scaling rock ledges in mere sandals. I am still in awe of her. 

Ben, a much more experienced and fearless hiker, admiring the view as we catch our breath. He and our other trailmates kept reassuring us as we were scrambling up rock slabs, shuffling down trail ladders, scaling rock ledges, and descending a 4,000 foot ridgeline, to name a few of our trail obstacles, half of which we accomplished in the rain. 

The root staircase. Easier than we thought. “This is it?!” We’re hard-core now. 

Swimming in ice cold waterfall pools never felt so good for sore muscles and blisters.

Final moments on the trail. Our last day was wonderful. A gradual decline from Bamforth Ridge shelter to Duxbury Road.

Ben, Mark, Carolyn, Dan, Marco, Me.