Day 21 (Stealth site to Ten Mile River Campsite)

The rain stopped before I needed to break camp but it was a buggy muggy morning. About 8 miles into the day I came to a clearing. I looked to my right and there was a beautiful lake. I dropped my pack, took off my shoes, and jumped in. It felt great! I swam for around 20 minutes.

I hiked a few more miles to the Pioneer Telephone Shelter for lunch. I met flip-flop thru hikers Umbrella Man and Still Thinkin’ as I was leaving. Still Thinkin’ and I are Dirty Girl Gaitor twins so we had to take photos. Umbrella Man is from Birmingham but he didn’t know any of the ultra runners in the area.

After lunch I passed by the Appalachian Trail train station. $15 and 2 hours and one can be in NYC. Tempting… I stopped at the garden center for a snack and to buy something for tomorrow’s breakfast. After hiking a few more miles, I crossed into Connecticut. Yay! State #4 complete! Then I hiked over Ten Mile Mountain to the Ten Mile River Campsite. It was another awesome site. I love listening to the river as I drift off to sleep.

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Day 20 (Graymoor Spiritual Life Center to stealth site)

The day started with more beautiful weather. I saw three wild turkeys within the first couple of miles. Then I hiked the next few hours with Pa Bert. This is his 3rd AT Thru Hike. I believe this is the first time in 20 days that I’ve hiked with another person. We had a nice conversation but I also enjoyed my alone time later in the day. 🙂

I believe most of the people I camped with last night hiked to the RPH shelter. I arrived there around 4:00pm and decided to continue on to the next shelter 9 miles away. I ended up racing a thunderstorm.

Four miles short of the shelter it caught me. No problem. I set my tent up on a flat spot right by the trail. I’m dry and comfy inside listening to the rain hit the tent. I will sleep well tonight.

Day 19 (Memorial Shelter to Graymoor Spiritual Life Center)

The day started with climbs over Black Mountain and Bear Mountain. Both are ~34 miles from NYC. You are supposed to be able to see the NYC skyline from the tops of the mountains but I couldn’t. Still very pretty views.

In the town of Bear Mountain, NY the trail goes through the zoo and then crosses the Hudson River. The zoo was kind of sad… animals in cages, etc.

In Bear Mountain I ran into a thru hiker that Laura and I met near Tray Mountain in March. Her trail name was “Prof” back then but she has since changed it to “New Found”. I’m camping tonight on a baseball field at the Monastery. They encourage thru hikers to stay here. There are about 15 other hikers here including Bald Eagle, New Found, Little Goat, Smokes, Shoeless, and K-Tar(sp?). Fun evening hanging out.

I've seen so many of these rock walls in the middle of nowhere. Are they old property lines or battle lines from the Revolutionary War or Civil War?

I’ve seen so many of these rock walls in the middle of nowhere. Are they old property lines or battle lines from the Revolutionary War or Civil War?

Day 18 (Eastern Pinnacles to William Brien Memorial Shelter)

On days 1-17, I’ve received trail magic three times. This morning there were four trail magic spots. It was fun to see what each one had to offer. Two were just water but at times that I really needed them. One was a very well stocked first aid kit attached to a tree at the top of a mountain miles from any road. I didn’t need any first aid but I did enjoy using a QTip. The other one was a cooler full of fruit… Awesome!

The AT in New York is almost never flat. It is constant steep ups and downs. Hopefully it is getting my climbing legs ready for NH and ME. I decided to camp near a shelter. Unfortunately, no one else was there except a friendly deer.

Day 17 (Glenwood to stealth site near Eastern Pinnacles)

The day started with a walk on a wooden walkway in a wetlands area. I enjoyed talking to my mom on the phone as I walked along. 🙂 I met thru hiker Eddy (trail name) at lunch today at the Wawayanda Shelter. I’ve been seeing her posts in trail registers for over a week now. She is funny.

I finished NJ and crossed the state line into New York about midday. The AT guide book says this about the first 6 miles of NY: “Despite the unimposing profile, rocks, abrupt ups & downs make this section challenging.” It was actually a fun section.

I met some very nice local people on the trail today. A very nice woman reminded me that Bill Bryson said those NY rocks were some of the oldest rocks in the US. There was a man that recognized me from the Unionville Horler’s Grocery store yesterday morning.

I have an awesome view from my tent tonight. I’m facing east so sunrise should be great!

Day 16 (Stealth site to stealth site near Glenwood, NJ)

Today was supposed to be a rest day so I limited the miles and took a lot of breaks. The day started with hiking 2.6 miles on trail and then .5 miles on road to get into Unionville, NY. I had breakfast at Horler’s Store while waiting on the P.O. to open so I could get my resupply box. [ Thank you MJ. 🙂 ]

I ate a second breakfast while packing up. In all I spent 2.5 hours on the front porch of this cool store. I was able to charge some of my electrical stuff, too. Next I hiked a few miles to the Wallkill Nature Preserve. I sat under a tree for about an hour and enjoyed the view. I was also able to order some new Hokas. Pennsylvania rocks were not kind to the pair I started with. New shoes will be in Kent, CT when I get there.

Next I climbed Pochuck Mountain. I cooked lunch at the overlook. Then I hiked a few more miles to a stream where I bathed and did laundry. A couple more miles and I set up camp and ate dinner. Over all a very relaxing day. I should leave NJ and enter NY on the trail tomorrow. 🙂

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Day 15 (Stealth site to stealth site near Unionville, NY)

The goal for the day was to get close to Unionville so that I could pick up my resupply from the P.O. before noon on Saturday. If I was late, I would have to wait until the P.O. opened on Tuesday.

The trail and scenery continue to be awesome in New Jersey. It’s Friday so there are a lot more people on trail starting their weekend adventures. I went by the highest point in New Jersey (High Point) in the last few miles of the day. Also, i passed the 300 mile mark for my hike.

Yay! Fun day.