Week 18: The White Mountains
Our feet took us 106 miles this week!
Video of the Week
This was the best week on the trail and quite possibly the best week of my life. Danielle, Barnum and I were absolutely spoiled to sleep at the Wilson's condo all but one night in the White Mountains. Every morning one of my parents would drop us off at the trail head and pick us up 12-22 miles later. The Whites are extremely difficult to hike. Even doing 15 miles a day was extremely hard on our bodies- and that's with just a day pack! I was disheartened to hear that so many thru-hikers were hating the White Mountains. While they were moping, I was on cloud nine. I kept thinking "This is what hiking the AT is all about- extremely challenging hikes and extremely incredible views". It was sad that they couldn't enjoy that. I probably would have hated me if I were them. Then again, if I had my big pack, I don't know that I would have loved the whites so much. For that, I thank the Wilsons and my lovely parents for slack packing us through the whites. I brought my DSLR aka Tamera my camera. She slayed the Whites.
My favorite hike of my life was Franconia Ridge. We were blessed with a beautiful blue bird day. We trekked up Mt. Liberty then over Little Haystack, Mt. Lincoln, Mt. Lafayette, then down the ridge only to go back up Mt. Garfield. What and amazing day.
The Presidential Traverse
Another amazing trek! Our best friend in the whole world, Marissa, visited us for the first half of the presidential traverse (the day that was only uphill). She absolutely dominated the trek, kept up with us, and enjoyed the amazing views. We really lucked out with beautiful weather- as Mt. Washington is known for its treacherous conditions.
I honestly can't complain because I was so, so happy all week. But if I had to complain, it'd be about all my aches and pains. I feel like my body is falling apart. TBH I think I'm going to need a knee replacement. Sitting is more like a plunge to the chair because slowly lowering myself safely hurts too much. My feet feel like I'm walking on knives for the first steps after sitting down a while. My ankles wake me up at night, throbbing from being twisted many times that day. My hands have been going numb lately. When I bend my hand backwards, a shock is sent through my fingers. I think I gave myself carpel tunnel syndrome from holding my poles so aggressively for four months...yikes.
Okay, I can also complain about Mt. Madison. Hiking down was ridiculously steep. My knees were crying. It was extremely windy and cloudy so the views weren't as great as the day before. I had to pee on the ridge and obviously there were no trees to get privacy. It got to the point that I didn't care if I had privacy, I was about to pee myself. I'm pretty good at the squat and aim at this point, but the intense wind blew my pee all over me. Fortunately, only Danielle was there to witness this bummer. I felt so bad for the SOBO hikers that had to hike up Mt. Madison. That has got to be one of the toughest climbs.