Monday, April 28, 2008

Mount Ktaadn

I was actually looking at a book for school today, go figure. But look what I found.

Mount Ktaadn, from W. Butterfield's, Oct 8th 1836, Near the Grand Schoodic Lake. Lithographic plate by Moore's of Boston, for the Maine geological survey, from Charles T. Jackson, Atlas of Plates Illustrating the Geology of the State of Maine (1837-1839), reprinted in Anne Shelby Blum, Picturing Nature: American Nineteenth-Century Zoological Illustration (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993), 120.
Ha! I am so spelling Katahdin that way from now on.
For those who don't know, Ktaadn is the symbol of AT achievement. It is the northern terminus of the trail, in Maine. Most hikers go north and end at Ktaadn, so those who speak of completing the trail speak of "reaching Katahdin." So I thought it was pretty spiffy that I was thinking about my paper and not the trail for once...but my paper apparently wants me to think about the trail too! Can't escape!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Tenth Hour

By that I mean it's not quite the eleventh hour, at least not for me. Daniel is starting in just a few days, I realized, but I have a month yet. Still, his visit last week was exciting for me. For one, I got to play with the tarp for the first time. My doubts regarding the rain configuration aside (what if there's wind PLUS rain, Daniel?), I love it. We'll be good friends, tarp and I. And seeing it pitched in the yard made the trip even more real for me. It is almost time, and I am nearly prepared. I believe, for instance, that I now have everything I need. There is still the issue of optional electronic devices to settle, but I do have everything I literally need. I could walk out tomorrow.

(But I won't walk out tomorrow because I have two classes to finish...I will, I will write that paper...)

Returning to the topic at hand, there are some preliminaries to get through. I've scheduled a physical, and I need a tooth filled. And my insurance will run out July 31, so it would be best to line up some coverage ahead of time. But that's it. Daniel says he has nearly everything he needs as well. I have to say I'm somewhat giddy.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


This past Sunday(4/13/08), Brittany and I got together at her place in Greensboro to sort through all our stuff and see what we could come to conclusions and agreements on.

First we checked out our packs and I showed her a couple of cool features on there that she didn't even know about. For one, the top of her pack, which is a 07 Gregory Deva, comes off completely and is usable as a day pack. The other thing that she didnt know about was the fact that there were a couple of pockets on the side that she overlooked. She found that a Nalgene fits well into the round pocket on the side as well. We packed her pack down, fit a rain cover it, and were off for the next task.

The task of which I speak is figuring out the tarp. The a-frame set up is ideal for nice weather is pretty elementary and not a big deal to set up at all, but setting up for rain is a different thing. So we tried a bunch of other setups to get as much coverage on as many sides and the best set up was staking the sides out long and then putting a trekking pole under the middle. It's a tight squeeze in and out of it so hopefully we will discover better set ups and not have to prepare for heavy rain all that often.

Last thing on the day was to explore different food options because Brittany is vegan. Since Brittany is vegan, I anticipate that 80% of the time I will be eating vegan as well. We stopped off at Earth Fare first, which is a health food store much like Whole Foods. After perusing the selection, I picked up the vegan chili mix and she picked up a dehydrated black bean mix. The results of the chili = mucho farts and fair taste. The beans = mucho farts and marginal taste. The chili won't be available much so if anyone wants to send me some of that at some point I wouldn't mind, just don't everyone send me chili at the same time because it will end up doing me more harm than good... if you know what I mean. If you have any suggestions for food, just comment here. Let us know who you are and what your favorite trail meals and foods are. We're always open to suggestions!