I was still bitter about those two guys packing up so late. I actually slept fairly well given that I was alone. I was pretty exhausted from the day and ready for sleep.
I woke up and could see the orange sky from the sunrise and thought about getting up but I didn’t.
I planned to hike 12 miles to the shelter and see what time it was and how I was feeling. Plan B was to push 20 miles. Yes, that is correct 20 miles. The girl who complained that the trail was too hard to do 20s was potentially about to attempt another one. Like I said I wanted to play it by year.
Leaving camp it was pretty much all down hill, which is a relative term according to the Long Trail or maybe Guthook is lying to me. Everytime I look to see okay cool I’m going downhill to the parking lot. I have little ups along the way. I like things straightforward…. no surprises. It was rocky and steep in sections and still slightly muddy. I passed two separate groups of people headed up.
After crossing the road, it seemed to be an entirely different trail. The ups were a little more mild until I reached a descent. Right before nearing Devil’s Gulch I hadn’t come across any other backpackers. I ran into a cute guy with his dog and he told me of a tough staircase ahead but the rest of the day the trail was easing up.
I enter Devil’s Gulch by climbing a ladder. It seemed eerie and I wasn’t fond of the name. It reminded me of a mini version of the Mahoosuc Notch in Maine. I climbed up and after, passed several more backpackers. A lot of people had camped at the Spruce camp. Go figure because that’s what I had planned to do the day before. I took a break to eat breakfast near the camp and three young, timid boys wondered down waiting for their adult. I got up and started the steep climb towards Butternut Mountain. I don’t remember too much about the AT in Vermont but I do remember there were some rolling hills and steep section.
Butternut mountain felt like it had 10 false summits. It was wooded so every steep up I climbed felt like it was “the one.” Certain points felt like I wasn’t even climbing a mountain at all.
After that it wasn’t long before I walked downhill and reached the Corliss Shelter. It was super cute and homie looking. The smell did not match the outside. I ran into two younger girls and they had camped there and two younger guys. Both parties had left camp pretty late maybe I was doing something wrong here by getting up early.
I met two more girls going SoBo. I had heard about them but they were doing a section and getting off of trail today. It was just before 12 when I reached the shelter and although it was pretty I couldn’t sit there all day.
It was only one more mountain to climb. I left the camp climbing pretty steeply and eventually it leveled out and I forgot I was even climbing up a mountain. I also put my headphones in for some motivation. This was the first time I had done that on this trip. The silence has been golden.
Parts of the climb up this mountain reminded me even more of the Whites with large granite slabs of rocks. There was no view but a look out was little ways down the trail. I stopped there for a few minutes in the sun before taking off down the trail. I was only 5.4 miles away to camp! The downhill was pretty steep and I passed a few day hikers.
After reaching the road, I only had two more ups for the day. The second to last one was a Bitch. I was basically climbing at a 90 degree angle at times without climbing up at actual mountain. There was maple syrup tubes I had to occasionally duck under.
I finally reached the last road crossing and knew I only had 1 more mile to RoundTop shelter. It was a long uphill mile but I was so eager to get to camp. I had done it! 20 miles! I put up my tent and looked at my food inventory. I would have to start doing 14s/15s for bit as the terrain is harder.
I decided to hitch into Johnson and top off on my food in order to make to Waterbury like originally planned. Oh, and a couple with their dog is camped here too! It’s going to be a good night of sleep!