Wednesday–October 13, 2021
Location–US-4 (489.0) to Upper Cold River Road (501.1), then back to Gifford Woods State Park
First light is yet to arrive, but Barry is up putting coffee on and getting the fire going. I finally wake a little before six–to the coffee Barry’s perked, plus a delicious fried egg and cheese sandwich.
This day is going to be very challenging, so I want to get an early start–Barry has Kitchen Sink and me on trail exactly at seven to begin our climb up and over Killington Peak.
The climb, as expected, is slow and steady, taking the entire morning. We get up and over Killington but don’t reach Little Killington until after one. There, we take a short break for lunch before beginning the long descent to Upper Cold Brook Road.
Up and down climbing, both can be dangerous. Adding to that danger now, the blanket of fall leaves. Autumn is in all its glory, even though the maple, birch, hickory and oak have shed much of their canopy. This blanket of leaves conceals the trail gremlins already set to trip us up. I manage to stumble over numerous roots and rocks I’d have otherwise stepped over and avoided. Fortunately, none pitch me over, and I complete the day unscathed.
Evening, before returning to the campground, we go to dinner at The Garlic in Killington where we celebrate Kitchen Sink‘s 44th birthday. Barry treats us.
It’s been a long, difficult day. The nearly six-thousand feet of up and down elevation change really wore me out…
Challenges are what make life interesting
and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.
(Joshua J. Marine)