8-3-12

AT miles hiked today: 2.9
Total AT miles hiked: 958.1

We hiked out from Ethan Pond campsite and down some more easy trail towards Crawford Notch. Suddenly, Eagle Eye started yelling and took off her pack. I looked back and saw a few bees swarming her head and shoulders. "Run!" I yelled. "Get away from the bees!" She came running towards me, and luckily the bees didn't follow. She got stung three times and said they looked like they were black with white stripes. Eventually she snuck back and recovered her pack and trekking poles and we wrote a note of warning for other hikers heading southbound. We didn't want to go back through the bees to leave a note for the northbound hikers so we asked somebody southbound to leave a note on the other side. Then Chucky da Phish came down the trail and Eagle Eye yelled to watch out for the bees just as he yelled. He got stung, too.

We left the note and hiked down to the parking area where we met up with DW, Chucky da Phish, Dame Quixote, and Chief to wait for Low Gear. As we waited, four women we had met earlier at the campsite came along. They had given us food and snacks up there and we talked with them some more. They were very friendly and fun. They thought the bees were actually asps, that live in the ground. Low Gear came along with Easy Mile and Diamond and then Sparky and Stubby showed up in two cars and brought cold soda, fruit, candy and snacks and took us, the "lucky ten" hikers, to the EMS in North Conway and then on to their condo.

We got showers and laundry going and they grilled steak, ribs, chicken and sausage, plus there was corn on the cob, watermelon, potato salad and it was all so good. I even took my first bath since I've been on the trail. It was amazing. I love my baths and didn't realize how much I had missed them. I can't believe how wonderful this day has been. I feel so lucky. We must have done something really, really good to deserve this wonderful trail magic. Thank you Sparky and Stubby and Low Gear!