Written by: Katherine 'Ringleader' Imp
Four months. We have been living in the woods for four months. What does this do to your mind? Your body? Your soul?
The only way for me to explain this transformation is to describe our time in the Whites...
Day 1: Mount Moosilauke
Morning -- begin to make our way to the first white mountain of New Hampshire.
All: We made it to the Whites! Woohoo! We've come so far! Together! How exciting!
Lunch -- break at shelter before beginning 2500-foot climb
Emily: Kate, what are you doing?
Kate: I'm closing my eyes until Bran gets back from the privy.
-- 30 seconds later --
Emily: If she's taking a nap, I'm going to sleep too.
-- 2 minutes later --
Kate & Emily: *snoring*
Bran returns: I guess I'll take a nap.
-- 2 hours later --
Emily: Why am I so tired?
Bran: It's raining.
Kate: Because you hiked 1700 miles.
Bran: I hate hiking in the rain.
Kate: We should go.
Top of Moosilauke -- freezing, rain/hail, insane wind
All: This is awesome! I feel so alive!
Bottom of Moosilauke -- ends with 1.5 miles straight down on wet rocks; follows waterfall
Kate: I wish I could just sit next to the waterfall rather than walk past it.
Bran: I hate rocks.
Emily: That took forever. I miss my 4 mile/hr pace.
Moosilauke parking lot -- people offer us a ride to a hostel in town
All: Yay! Luck strikes the traveling circus again! So happy!
Day 3: Franconia Ridge
Morning -- hike up to ridge, below tree line
Kate: This is supposedly the most beautiful part of the Appalachian Trail! Exciting!
Bran: Damnit! My shoe is soaking wet and covered in mud!
Emily: I feel like I have nothing to look forward to anymore.
Kate: You two are ridiculous.
Bran & Em: Why are you criticizing us?
Afternoon -- get to ridge, beautiful day, clear skies
Bran: This is awesome!
Emily: How beautiful!
Kate: There's no where else I'd rather be.
Day 5: Lakes of the Clouds Hut, The Presidentials
Morning -- Kate slips on wood plank. Slams shin. Falls in puddle of mud. Can't get up.
Emily: Kate! Are you okay?
Kate: *crying* Fuck the world!
Emily: Kate, you have to get up. You are lying in a puddle of mud.
Kate: My shin hurts so bad. I'm tired of feeling like shit all the time!
Bran rolls up: What happened?
Emily: Kate took a bad fall and has been lying in a pile of mud for 10 minutes.
Bran: You want me to film you?
Afternoon -- get to Lakes of the Clouds Hut, treated like 2nd class citizens
Kate: Why are they segregating us from the other hikers?
Emily: Because we aren't paying to stay here and we smell.
Kate: I hiked 1800 miles to get here. They should be bowing down and feeding me with a spoon.
Bran: I'm not sleeping in that rat-infested Dungeon.
Night -- the Traveling Circus entertains 120 Hut guests with a panel discussion about thru-hiking
Hut worker: You three can sleep in the dining hall if you'd like. Thanks for entertaining.
All: Only the traveling circus....
Day 7: hike into Gorham, NH
Mood -- changes every 5 minutes
Injury count -- not good
Emily: legs look like they went through a garbage disposal
Kate: bruised shins, bad knees, broken toe
Bran: stabbed foot with trekking pole
Transition stress -- clearly has begun
All: So ready to go home, but also don't ever want to leave....