7/26

Saw a bear! Big bear. He paralleled the trail going in the opposite direction. I don’t think he saw us. I tried to get a picture, but he walked behind some trees.

I also saw my first porcupine today! Yay! It was an adorable little bugger.

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Did 16 miles and am staying at Shaker campsite tonight. The first ten miles I wasn’t really motivated but the last six felt good. We passed a couple ponds today and ran into some trail maintainers making stone steps. I met Lucky and Zoe and saw Achilles and Flavor Savor again. Zoe is the daughter of thru hiker Nema and came out to surprise her mom. We heard them shriek when they saw each other at Wilcox shelter. That’s some nice trail magic. I hope my dad gets a chance to come out and hike with me. I think he’d really love it.

We see southbound thru hikers everyday now and they’re so chipper and full of life. We joke that they probably see us as worn out, beat down hikers with blank stares, always complaining and just dragging ourselves along. It’s an exaggeration, but we are really more worn out. We’ve been out here several months. It’ll be really nice to get home, to eat real food all day and to shower more than once a week and have more than one t-shirt to wear. It’s going to be awesome to wear cotton!

The water in mass isn’t as good as I hoped for but we’ll get better water in VT. Should be there next week. Then just NH and ME to go!

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7/26

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