Oh, I was lazy, knowing I was only doing 10 miles today. (Yes, I know, “only” 10 miles… But truthfully, that has become a short day, somehow.) I did not hit the trail until 9 am.
The first five miles draaaaagged. I don’t have much to say about them. They just dragged. Very nondescript, dusty, buggy miles. It started turning around once I hit Rock Island Pond, at the 5 mile mark.
I had plenty of time, it was only noon, and the bugs relented enough that I actually ate lunch at the shelter, then lay back and had a nice nap on the shaded platform. It’s been turning hot; I guess that happens in summer.
The food and nap gave me plenty of energy for the last 5 miles; also, fortunately, it got away from the “dirt path and dusty pines” motif, and presented me with some rock scrambling, and a steep, careful descent over rocks. The adrenaline boost helped very much.
Unwisely though, once I arrived at the shelter, I decided not to pitch the tent. The mosquitos loved it – me, not so much. I eventually spread a bandana over my head so I could sleep without being bitten, but even the bandana couldn’t block out noise… A group of giggly girl scouts arrived around 8:30, and though they tented behind the shelter, the concept of being quiet when others are trying to sleep apparently was foreign to them. We were already in sleeping bags and settled in when they arrived.
I hiked on.