This day would be an eventful day for us. It took us a while to break camp. Heather had to get her makeup on and shave her legs. I’m just kidding but it does take her a little longer to get ready than Cara and I. It’s just one of those things God did to her to balance out her prettiness. Seriously, if you look that good 5 days on the trail then you can’t be fast too. That wouldn’t be fair to the rest of us halfway goodlookers.
Our plan was to get to Upper Goose Pond Cabin. Rumor had it that there was a man there that made you all the blueberry pancakes you wanted with bacon and coffee. We had over 18 miles to go , over the meadow and through the woods. The trail was a muddy mess. After a morning of hiking hard we came to a road and there was a sign that said fresh boiled eggs for sale. Well, heck when you have been eating lara bars and trail mix a boiled egg sounds amazing. We followed the little road to an old farmhouse with an apple tree in front and load of blueberry bushes. I knocked on the door and it was answered by a little old man. He said, “Are ya’ll here for some cookies?” I looked at the girls and said, “um, yes!!” His wife usually served the cookies to starving hikers but seeing that she was visiting in town he hooked us up! I ordered 5 boiled eggs and he brought out ice cold cokes and a plate of homemade chocolate chip cookies. We sat under the apple tree at weathered picnic table and feasted. He talked and giggled with us for about half an hour and then asked us if we would like a Klondike bar. Seriously. Did we just get struck by lightening and enter the pearly gates? Pretty positive at that moment I was sure that we had arrived and St. Peter was serving us at the marriage supper of the lamb. Yes, it was that amazing. We did not want to leave but we still had loads of miles before that cabin in the deep woods with the blueberry pancakes. Back on the muddy trail we met some thru hikers, Red Beard and Tbow. Eye Candy. That’s all I will say about that since I am HAPPILY married. After a couple more miles we found ourselves deep in a muddy thicket. Cara’s backpack was really hurting her back and so we had stopped to adjust it. At that moment we met another hiker who apparently had all kinds of backpack knowledge and was able to help her adjust her pack. Cara shared some words with him….totally crossed…no…jumped over the line of appropriate things to say to a complete stranger. We left him standing there with a red face while we giggled and walked very quickly down the goopy path. And , no, I can’t share what she said or else our mother will never buy us hiking gear again.
We kept hauling hot Oklahoma bootie up and down that trail. Cara had developed some blisters and heather was imagining herself in a gentle yoga slow flow class so the later it got the slower they got. It seemed like we should have been there already. We had been walking over an hour since we saw the sign saying Upper Goose Pond 2 miles. I was beginning to think we had taken the wrong trail and I started seeing clouds on the horizon. I decided to break out the phone and give Tom Lavardi a call. I told him where we were and asked him if we were close or if we had gone too far. He told me we were getting closer and to keep going but start running because a huge storm was on the way. He said it could be dangerous because of the winds and lightening. At this point I am hiking alone. I have left the sisters behind and have gone up to trail to try to make sense of where we were. I turned and started running as fast as I could to them and when I saw them I started screaming, HURRY!!!!! WE HAVE GOT TO GET THERE BEFORE THE STORM HITS!! We all started running….most was down hill, Thank God. About a mile later we see the beautiful 2 story red cabin peaking through the tall trees. We stepped on the porch and the first thunder sounded, shaking the cabin. We were welcomed by the caretakers, an older man and lady and they told us to find a bunk upstairs with the rest of the hikers. It was pitch black when we pushed open the doors so we turned our headlights on. The smell hit us before the smiles. The room was filled with about 8 male hikers that had not seen soap or deodorant in weeks. They were happy to see girls. Of course. We pushed our way through their clotheslines of wet socks and tents and found a couple of bunks empty by the screened windows. AIR. We rigged our own clothes lines through the rafters and hung up all our wet gear. As I was standing to help heather get her sleeping bag out on her top bunk my old factory smelled the worse scent I had ever smelled. In my whole, entire life. I turned my head lamp on, thinking Heather had eaten too much hummus and was surprised to see Cara’s wet, 5 days of wearing, socks just mere inches from my face. Her socks beat out the 2 months of no showering hiker guys. There has got to be a way for her to profit off of that terrible smell. It still haunts me.
The old cabin shook with the crazy loud thunder all night. I felt for sure that the trees were going to come crashing down on us and the lightening show was amazing across the pond.