Miles from Springer Mountain: 1495.5
Miles to Mount Katahdin: 696.5
The last three days have been a trip! It started with leaving New York and entering Connecticut, getting violently sick all night of the fourth, and finally crossing the 700 miles left mark. Holy cow, it’s been an exhausting 72 hours and I’m glad I’m still on trail to experience it, even if it was painful.
On the 3rd I woke up from my campsite and set off for a big day of walking. I crossed some train tracks next to the only railroad station directly on the AT, I walked through some sprawling fields and flat woods to shortly afterward enter my ninth state, Connecticut! New York treated me well, the rocks were tough at some points and I was hopelessly waterlogged for well over half of its miles, but I can safely say it’s in the top 13 of Appalachian Trail states.
With a positive experience on the 3rd, I set out for a larger day on the 4th, a 25+ miler. There were a heck of a lot of ups and downs, by the end of the day I was wore out, but proud I had made it as far as I hoped. I had what I thought was a great campsite, the water was a bit of a walk, but the bugs weren’t bad and I wasn’t alone at the shelter. Little did I know the great calamity of a night I was about to have.
It started around 12:30, I woke up feeling weird, bloated and uncomfortable. I checked my phone and tried to shrug it off, it wouldn’t go away. Going to the bathroom in the woods is a normalcy for hikers, however it gets a little tough when the routine gets muddy (read between the lines). I cleaned up and as I walked back to my tent I fell to my knees and started vomiting violently. I’ve thrown up plenty in my life, a lot of times it’s due to the Michigan flu, I’ve only had food poisoning once – this was closer to the FP experience. I spent the next three hours repeating the process, thankfully I was able to either get out of my tent for the former or at least open the hatch for the latter. It was a horrible night.
The next morning I woke up with only a speck of energy – I couldn’t even start gathering my things to leave until 11. I was completely dehydrated, unable to eat an ounce of food, and mentally defeated. I can’t pin it down exactly, but it might have been some random gastro-intestinal issue or norovirus. I always filter or boil my water, I don’t haphazardly eat food, and I stay as relatively clean as I can. It’s been a few weeks since I’ve ate a mouse… just kidding, it’s been a couple months.
The 5th was a slow day, I didn’t start walking until noon and even at that point it was maybe a mile and a half an hour – I stopped about every half hour to sit on a rock and collect myself. I forced myself to drink water, but I couldn’t eat, nothing seemed appetizing and the thought of some foods made me feel sick. I only made it about 8 miles, a mile outside of Falls Village, CT, and that was after stopping for an hour to charge my batteries and sit in the grass outside a power plant.
The past three days of have been some medium highs, but drastically low lows. I’m still out here walking, just a little slower and with a little less toilet paper. Thanks for reading and thanks for some of your questions, I’ll get to them next post when there’s less bathroom-esque jokes. I’m also sorry this post isn’t flush with photos, I couldn’t stomach taking more of them.