Thursday–September 16, 2021
Location–Madison Spring Hut
Another great night in Gorham, the Top Notch Inn. Unfortunately, when we got there yesterday, all the rooms were full. But fortunately, the old house (around which the motel was built)–they rent that out too, and the folks who’d reserved it for the night had just cancelled. So, Speedy, Copperhead & I, we took it and moved right in. Three bedrooms, large living room, full kitchen–the works!
Forecast for today, one word, “beautiful!”
We’re up and out well before seven. First stop, McDonald’s drive-thru for breakfast. Our hike today will begin at NH-16, Pinkham Notch Visitors Center, from there to start the long, hard climb, a half-mile of up, to get up and over Mount Madison, then down to the hut at the spring there. The climb seems unending, the longest after the climb to Katahdin. Pretty much wears me out. But the day is indeed “perfect,” the sky is the bluest ever, tufts of cirrus clouds, not a hint of haze. The ridge line here, leading from Madison to Washington, is one of the windiest places anywhere. But today, just the least breeze. Indeed, it is an amazing day, the photo opportunities–just aim and click, any direction.
I take another fall, injuring my right shin and left hip–again. Both were healing nicely from the last run-in with the rocks.
Over Madison, it’s less than 0.4 miles down to the hut, but the boulder-strewn descent takes an hour. The hut burned and has been rebuilt since I passed through back in 2000, so everything is neat and new. I get checked in just after four-thirty. Speedy & Copperhead have found a nearby spot to stealth camp.
Supper is at six. I’m in my bunk well before seven…
May your dreams be larger than mountains
and may you have the courage to scale their summits.