8-25-12

AT miles hiked today: 17.7
Total AT miles hiked: 1148.3

I'm tenting at Pierce Pond Lean-to, along with Eagle Eye and Chucky da Phish and some other hikers. We got here just after 7pm, after pushing for most of the day. We did stop for lunch at a shelter and met Cow Tale and saw several snakes there. Two of the snakes seemed to be fighting, or maybe trying to mate? I've never seen anything like it. They were moving very fast!

There were ponds and beaches all day long. I wish the weather had been a bit warmer and also that we had had more time, but we were trying to catch Toe Knee here, and so we kept going. Eagle Eye spotted an owl watching us from a tree nearby and we tried to get some pictures, but mine didn't turn out. I sent home my wildlife lense back in Georgia and I couldn't get close enough without a big zoom lense.

When we got here, though, after 7pm and in the gathering dark, there was no Toe Knee. She had gone on with Dame Q and caught the canoe ferry over the Kennebec river. It only runs from 9-11am and to 2-4pm. We found a note in the register that she wasn't planning on going into Caratunk either because she didn't need extra food after all. I did, though, and Eagle Eye had a package coming. It looks like we may have lost Toe Knee for real.

This shelter register has turned into a memorial towards Parkside, a thruhiker who drowned while swimming in the pond here this year. He was young and it's sad and profound and the pond was beautiful in the near dark. What a strange and haunting place this is. I'm glad we stayed here.