Monday, August 6, 2001

day 86, Vernon, NJ (hostel)

Start:  High Point Shelter
End:  Vernon, NJ (hostel)
Miles:  19.7 today, 1337.9 total

For the first time in a long time I hiked pretty fast today.  Left the shelter at like 9:20am, so I figured I'd get to NJ 94 about 10 hours later, assuming a pace of 2 mph.  Well, I jacked up the pace a bit and got there between 6 and 7.  Unfortunately, New Jersey drivers don't stop for dirty hikers, so I ended up walking the 2 miles into town.  Put out the thumb many a time, but no such luck.  I'm thinking my beard and dirty clothes make me look like a bum.  I've been seriously considering shaving for awhile.  Eating wouldn't be as messy, I'd be cooler, I'd look cleaner, and thus get less stares.  But, I wouldn't look like a Mountain Man when I finish the trail.  And that's really the reason why I'm out here: to be the Mountain Man.  So, that settles it, the beard stays for now.

Oh, big news:  met my first thru-hiking southbounders today.  There was Dude, Add Miles, and Sweat Bucket.  They all started from Katahdin, though at different times.  It's cool seeing SOBOs, they're like long-lost hiking brothers and sisters.

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