Day 171 – 16.1 miles to stealth camp at 2066.0 (123.1 miles to go)

Moving towards Monson and avoiding drinking tadpoles.


The night had been warm and humid enough that I had started sleeping in just my silk sleeping bag liner and moved into the bag itself only later. It drizzled very lightly at one point. The morning was cool and misty but not cold if you were moving. The sun made its presence known early, poking through the trees.
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Soon I passed under a couple of overhanging boulders and rocks known as The Caves though they are not much bigger than this picture captures. It would be a nice place to avoid rain or hot sun though.
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The morning hiking started with a long climb up Moxie Bald Mountain (2630′), a 1700′ climb over 4.5 miles that got steep at the end at which the promised views were lost in cloud.
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I hiked 4 miles further to reach the first water source of the day, Bald Mountain Stream, which Guthook promises has a very fast flow.
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Well today it was barely moving and not only did I need to use a ziplock bag to scoop water due to the low flow and shallowness, I had to take care to avoid scooping up tadpoles.
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I had lunch here having completed 9 of the 15-16 miles I wanted today. The afternoon was much easier terrain than the last few days and the elevation was mostly flat to boot so I could finish early at 4:30pm, camping near the West Branch of the Piscataquis River. Still, darkness at 7pm means I’m still rushing to finish chores in time. The only person to pass in either direction was Grizzly Adams, looking to start tomorrow even nearer Monson.

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