Hanover, NH to Gorham, NH [1887 miles]

togorham

EHANOVERTOGO

Everyone warned me.

The Whites will kick your butt.

I always knew the Whites would be difficult. I thought that after 1800 miles and 5 months, I would be ready.

I was so wrong.

My first day in the Whites, I found myself spread out on the rocks like a spider. I tightened every muscle in my body and couldn’t move an inch up the mountain.

I looked up at the rocky trail and cried. This wasn’t hiking- this was rock-climbing. I don’t remember signing up for this. I thought the Whites would require 100% of my energy. But, it’s more like they would require 110%.

I soon learned that 1 mile in the Whites = 2 miles everywhere else.

I talked to a friend, and decided to walk slower. In this terrain, 10 mile days would be okay. Nobody would say to me “Oh, you walked to Maine? How long did it take you? 6 months? Wow, you’re slow.”

(If anyone says that, they’ll get smacked with a hiking pole.)

The Whites were brutal and serene.

One day I held a Gray Jay in my hand. It ate granola out of my palm as I gazed upon the mountains. It was a beautiful sunny day.

48 hours later, I hiked over Mt Madison in 60 mph wind. It was like the ship-sinking scene in Titanic, but with less water. I fell 5 times, and luckily, was not injured.

Shelters disappear in the Whites, and are replaced by 8 huts (and several tent sites). Thru-hikers are allowed to sleep on the floor and eat leftovers in exchange for helping with chores. There’s so much that I want to say about the AMC and the hut system.. But I feel like I’m looking at an iceberg, and there’s so much that I don’t understand yet. Perhaps I can only see the tip of the iceberg.

I was lucky to get work-for-stays at several huts.. I was treated well, but watched hikers get rejected in bad weather. There’s nothing more heart-breaking than watching your friends tent outside in the cold rain, when there is a perfectly good floor inside. I don’t understand the logic. For that reason, the Whites felt like a playground for the rich. I felt like I was playing a game of musical chairs.

A Croo member on the rules: “Be nice first. Follow the rules second.”

(Thank You!!)

But mostly, I was blessed with good weather, and good people. The Whites were a very special place.

I’m already blocking out all the bad memories. 60 mph wind? Bring it. It will only make me stronger.

I am a thru-hiker. We are tough.
When the world ends, it’ll just be cockroaches and thru-hikers sitting in a shelter talking about the bad weather.

Ok, I need to rest.

…Maine in 2 days!!

(Sorry, my pictures always upload in a funny order. Enjoy!!)

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Categories: New Hampshire | 10 Comments

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10 thoughts on “Hanover, NH to Gorham, NH [1887 miles]

  1. Acorn, you just keep up your inexorable progress. And I agree that 10 mi per day in the Whites is totally understandable. What amazes me is that it appears that you had wonderful weather for at least a couple of days! I have spent a number of days in the Whites, and I can only remember one day that even approached clear skies. Just another on the list of reasons I am so envious of you…

    Amazing, 2 days to Maine! Take it easy in the Notch…

  2. Josiah

    Wow so amazing, ur journey almost is over and a new one is about to start. It was a blessing looking at all the pics and see u live ur dream. I wish I was their in person to greet u at the end. But I will be with you in spirit.

  3. go girl its along way from springer where imet you at trail majic i have another friend who will be in gorham on friday if you see her her name is (spark to fire!) see you guys in a photo at the top!

  4. Love Sisu’s entry from ’00. I’ve read her TJ from cover to cover. Tried to contact her but no response. You’re doing a great job. Hang in there. Sisu’14

  5. Bill

    You are doing great. The whites are behind you and Maine awaits.

  6. I love the picture of you holding the bird!!! How precious 🙂 You go girl!

  7. Red Hat

    I couldn’t agree more about the Whites… most folks I know feel like the rock climbing is not what we signed on for… but somehow we manage to get through it.. then comes Maine! Hope to see you at The Gathering when you get your certificate!

  8. I’m just a hiker wanna-be, so I read about people like you. I am encouraged by your amazing positive attitude. Your pics are GREAT, add some txt to go with them. enjoy your journey, jillxoxoxo
    PS: today I will think of you while toiling at my job selling bicycles here in northwest indidana.

  9. Press on – press on! You’re so close to trail’s end and a magnificent accomplishment. And the photos on your blog are some of the finest of the AT I’ve seen anywhere.

    • I have complete confidence that Acorn will finish the trail. I’ve been reading about people who have, she has more guts than any of the people I’ve read about. She is nothing but uplifting. I’m looking forward to perhaps a book after Acorn finishes. Have fun.

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