From Steve: So last night at the Little Swift River Campsite, a thru-hiker named House (he looks like House from the TV show) recognized Rick. He had run into him at a Scenic Overlook in Vermont (for those of you who may have been with Rick, his real name was Dave and this was a new Trail name). He said Rick was generating “mad respect” all along the trail and that his story is spreading.
We were also treated to Rick’s playlist which was a pretty cool collection of 80’s and 90’s rock with some modern Country thrown in. Unfortunately we missed the opportunity to snap a picture of Rick playing air guitar, although we sang along to more than a few songs.
This morning we (Rick, Chris, Mann, Quinn, Deb, Matt and Steve) started our day with this stunning sunrise, pink skies reflected on Little Swift River Pond (see attached). We had a hearty breakfast of Pop Tarts, Apple Cinnamon Rolls, Oatmeal (Rick just had oatmeal with raisins) and of course lots of coffee. There may have been some healthier fare, but that’s boring!
Steady was ready, dressed, backpack on, poles in hand with that “Let’s hit the trail” look while the rest of us scrambled to catch up. Today’s trail was much less treacherous than the last two days (thankfully for Chris and me as we were definitely slowing Rick down the first two days on the trail) with some steady climbs and declines and only a few major obstacles to scramble over. The amazing thing with Rick or “Steady” (I’m sorry but I still haven’t got the hang of the Trail names thing) is that when he stumbles or falls, he just gets back up and moves on, seemingly never breaking stride as if nothing just happened while the rest of us are moaning and complaining.
Anyway, we came across lots of evidence of moose in the area but we never sighted one. We had been serenaded by a Loon on our first night and there were some really melodious birds every day on the trail, but no bears or anything like that either.
The weather was great though and it was a fantastic day for hiking. I can honestly say that as we approached the parking lot there was a little sadness that the day ended so early. But we stopped at a great little place in Mexico, Maine and had some whopping cheeseburgers with hand-cut fries and topped it all off with delicious milkshakes so we ended on a great note.
These last three days were truly a pleasure and I look forward to the next opportunity I get to hike with Rick.
Thanks to Rick for letting me come along and thanks to everyone else today for making it another great day.