The answer to the question everyone is dying to ask, and few get to us… Yes. The Ziptie, after walking all this way, can indeed completely demolish a plate of 12 large, but thin, pancakes, studded with apple, raspberries, and blueberries. In addition, she can also find room for 4 sausage links, 2 eggs, 1 glass of juice, and 2 cups of coffee… And be hungry again 4 hours later!
Today was an easy day in terms of hiking, partly because it was short, only 4 miles, partly because I had an amazing amount of energy from the large breakfast, and partly because the first 2 miles of trail were a soft, cushioned, pine-needley trail that was very easy on the feet.
It devolved into a tangle of rocks and roots at mile 3, stunning even by Maine standards, but did not drag my mood down, even so. I endured, and after some minor ups and downs, reached the Kennebec River. This is one of the largest rivers in Maine, and trying to ford it is severely frowned on, and quite foolhardy. I didn’t try. But I did completely enjoy the brief canoe ride across it!
.3 miles from the river is the Caratunk Bed & Breakfast and Hiker Hostel. Oddly enough, the main highway does not pass through Caratunk proper, but rather is perpendicular to the road that actually does.
This hostel is famed far and wide for it’s $4 burgers and $4 milkshakes. I tried both, and believe me, the fame is well deserved! So tasty! I inquired about room rates, expecting to hear the usual $25-$30 rate for a bunk… No. $30 for a real bed in a room all to myself! I’ll take it, please! This bed… Well, the owner of the business, Paul, collects antiques, so this is a genuine four poster bed, so high off the floor, I almost need a stepstool to climb into it! And so very comfortable!
The digestive system was working overtime today, because even after the huge breakfast and the burger and shake, around about 5, I was feeling peckish… again. Paul shuttled a few of us to a brewpub nearby. Two blueberry beers (with real blueberries added), some steak and cheese rolls, and 8 chicken wings later, I was feeling quite content. Though, I nearly set my head on fire by trying a chicken wing with a sauce that turned out to be chocolate chipotle – nothing on the menu had indicated the degree of heat. Eeesh!
This brewpub also rents rooms, and while I was not staying there, they had no objection to non-guests using their hot tub. I took the chance to soak my feet in hot water for a while, and I was hardly the only one!
This post has been sprinkled with ! – well, what can I say? It was a good day. Tomorrow, after breakfast here, which should be a very good one, I will press on, trying for 12 or 15 miles, depending on time and terrain. I have restocked the food bag with enough food for 3 days, which should be easily enough to get to Monson. (Autocorrect keeps wanting to change Monson to London. I find that amusing. 🙂 )
I smile. And I hike on.