September 11, 2016

First, I remember the World Trade Centers. May all the significance of that day be sanctified and elevated to its spiritual clarity, in perfect timing.

Now, for my current story. It’s 6 a.m. Thunder rumbles in the distance. The severe weather that motivated us to choose yesterday’s early stop at the Birch Glen Shelter has finally arrived.

I have no idea how many hikers are bedded down in this structure. After we had gone to bed, granted 7 p.m. is early, two college orientation groups of 8-10 hikers arrived!
They were graciously quiet, except for their clumping boots. It was a remarkably quiet night! Apparently, college freshmen sleep through the night!

It’s now 7:48, the rain is pelting down and it’s still quiet in here. I’ve got to get up soon! We have a big day planned, up to 13 miles, including Camel’s Hump, one of the five 4000-footers on the trail.

8:30 Everyone is up. WIell, everyone but Henry, one of us four Long Trail hikers over eighteen. I just counted the hikers from the two groups who crowded in last night – 11.

That makes 15 people in the shelter with four double bunks! Good thing, Birch Glen Shelter has two rooms! Hikers were packed in all over! I was so thrilled that everyone was quiet. I slept way better than I thought I would!

9 a.m. we’re out the door and the rain has stopped. A little apprehensive that the trail – and the rocks will be wet and slippery.

But, it’s warm and we’re off to Camel’s Hump!

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