Journal 172-ODYSSEY 2021: Bama to Baxter-Hike On!

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Tuesday–August 10, 2021
Trail Day–172
Trail Mile–11.4/1,955.5
Location–Abol Bridge Campground
661.9 Miles Remaining

Here at Rainbow Lake I could hear the call of the loon all night, but it disturbed my sleep not the least. I really enjoy being in my tent, sleeping on the ground. The site last night was close to level, in the soft duff dropped over time from the fir and spruce. I’ve splurged the least on this hike–must admit. You have come to know that in my extremely lightweight pack I carry only the needed and very meager essentials. This hike though, I’ve been carrying an inflatable pillow loaned me by my dear friend Stanley PHD Batchelor, which has added immensely to my sleep comfort level. So, a fine night’s sleep at Rainbow!

There’s a (to be dreamed about) piped spring right down by the lake here at Rainbow, so Nathan and I both top off our bottles with pure ice cold spring water before heading out.

The climbing doesn’t let up today, neither the rocks, boulders or roots, and first off it’s a scramble up and over Rainbow Ledges. And there are amazing ledges here, like pavement, with the trail following along so much a sidewalk. Again, no views, as the mountain is cloaked in the shroud. But we busy ourselves picking handfuls of the largest and most luscious low-bush blueberries found anywhere!

Much of this mountain is composed of glacial remains, erratic boulders in particular. The ones dropped here by the receding glacier are huge and striking, weighing hundreds of ton. The fern-covered ones are most impressive.

Early afternoon we put the 100-mile wilderness in our rear view as we leave it behind to emerge at Abol Bridge. Here, the Appalachian Long Distance Hikers Association (ALDHA) has set up a trail magic table where we meet trail angels Ken Nimbus Bunning, his wife, JoBeth, and Dennis Newton. Ken is the current chair of ALDHA. Hot meatball subs, ice cold drinks. What a great way for ALDHA to interact with long-distance hikers–and what a treat! Besides we hungry, thirsty ones, they’ve provided trail magic to over two dozen weary strugglers coming out of the 100-mile–thanks ALDHA!

Crossing Abol Bridge toward Abol Bridge Campground, where we’ll be staying a couple of nights, we pause at the bridge center span to capture Katahdin in all its glory, from one of the most impressive photo vantages anywhere around.

Evening, before settling in at our campsite right next the West Branch, Penobscot River, we return to Millanocket to Scootic In to have supper with Ole Man, our dear friend from Appalachian Trail Inn.

Another memorable, adventure-filled day; blessings continually lavished upon this old man…


Keep close to Nature’s heart
and break clear away once in a while,
and climb a mountain
or spend a week in the woods.
Wash your spirit clean.
(John Muir)


2 Comments on “Journal 172-ODYSSEY 2021: Bama to Baxter-Hike On!

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