Day 112: Zealand Falls to Lakes of the Clouds
Trip Start Mar 15, 2010
134Trip End Jul 23, 2010
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Happy 4th of July everyone! (well the people reading from the USA anyway!) I'm up at 5000 ft watching the displays of fireworks in the valleys below. Safe to say I don't usually see fireworks from above.
So in camping you can get an early start with no one to bother in the morning. I got up early and started hiking at 6:30. It feels so good to be out early on the trail. And the first 6 or so miles are easy. I make a short pit stop at one of the pay sites. Amazingly the shelter is one of the worst ive seen on the trail. Eight bucks for the night? No thanks!
Second breakfast is at the Saco River and then I have the 2500 foot climb up to Mt Webster and the Webster cliffs.
After Webster and Jackson then I reach the Mazpah hut at 1:30 and buy some homemade soup for lunch. Delicious to have a cooked meal (especially when I'm not the chef) up in the mtns.
I'm now up on the famous/infamous Presidential Ridge. I climb Pierce, Eisenhower, Franklin, and then arrive around dinner time at the Lakes of the Clouds Hut. The ridge walk above treeline to get here was very windy but the view long and spectacular! I ask for work for stay and they are happy to oblige. The hut is huge, accomodating up to 90 guests! Wowsers. There are four working thruhikers here tonight. Me, Pine and another older guy are NOBO and
yaw is SOBO. We do some menial work and get to eat the cold leftovers. AYCE is lovely especially when there is also dessert.
The sunset this evening was one to write home about. Absolutely spectacular with backlit clouds and everything. Today there were also a bunch of "UFO" clouds about. I haven't seen these types since Patagonia!
Another 20 mile day, but with a good early start it felt fine. Tomorrow will be Mt Washington which is looming above the hut. Always another mtn to climb! Well as I watch the line of traffic going home from the fireworks. I feel up above the world of chaos. Life in the mtn is beautiful when the weather is nice. The wind is rattling the windows so it's good to be inside.
Happy bday USA, and greetings to everyone. Hope that all is well down in the lowland.