|The summit is in view|
The route was 30 km to the summit and back, a light stroll for a fit young man and woman. But we were off to a rocky start even before our boots struck the trail. Chantal was asked to work Saturday morning, which delayed us, but more importantly, we were set back a whole 15 minutes because I forgot to write down directions. I received much scolding due to this, and my rusty gear-shifting abilities in the Golf.
By the time we had reached the trail head, it was nigh 7 o'clock. "Plenty of time to reach camp" I reassured. As the sun went down, I lighted the way with my beaming positivity, but my companion was starting to have doubts, about the hiking in darkness thing and uncertainty of how far ahead the nearest campsite lay. "That's why we have headlamps." That she had hiked to Cape Scot on northern Vancouver Island solo was my best argument for us to carry on. It helped little. Despite my positivity and expert nocturnal guiding skills, she had lost complete confidence in me. Nevertheless, withstanding a couple hours of scolding was a small price to pay for a chance to witness the melodic minstrel. When I had received a 10 minute ultimatum (I'm not sure what the threat was, we were in the wilderness) we suddenly saw a glimmer of light and heard the faint sound of hearty banter - it was the Adirondack Mountain Lodge! From the wilderness to the company of fellow hikers, my companion's spirits soared and I was relieved. The friendly Innkepper Dom even leant us a bear barrel. We were offered a room (for free!) by a group that had rented the whole place, which I would have given them some money for of course, had not Chantal resolved to continue to the next camp site. We had knocked off 7 km, 23 were left for tomorrow.
|The stunted forest where dwelleth the mountain mistrel|
As an endnote, here is a great program they have going in the Adirondacks: