After following the Long Trail in Vermont for about a hundred miles, the AT turns east and heads for New Hampshire and the White Mountains. From this point to Hanover, NH we walked on fine trails, leaving behind the mud in favor of drier ridges and better views.
One morning, we waited with several other hikers in front of a bakery until the proprietor unlocked the doors. For breakfast we shared a strawberry-rhubarb pie with vanilla ice cream, maple soda and fresh strawberries dipped in maple yogurt. The feast continued through the day as it seemed that every road crossing brought us close to a farm store selling local ice cream and other Vermont products. In West Hartford, VT we were able to tent for the night in the backyard of a hospitable couple. They entertained our group with stories of previous tenants’ misbehavior while we admired their two beautifully refurbished Model T’s.
The following morning we nearly made the it the final ten miles to Hanover before the rain started, and happily found that our hotel shared a parking lot with a large and wonderful grocery. We spent our Independence Day in wholehearted repose and then set out to tackle “The Whites” with our food bags so full that we were burdened by the weight and mocked by our fellow hikers.