Bennington, VT

Hey all! Jared here, or Banner if you prefer. This is my first post to the trail blog and an update of our hike from Manchester to Bennington.

Our past few days have been somewhat uneventful. We’ve started running into a lot more AT northbounders. This part of the AT coincides with the southern part of Vermont’s Long Trail, so we’ve met quite a few folks thru-hiking the Long Trail as well. I’d love to thru-hike that trail too sometime if I can make a chance.

Even though the glorious, 360-degree, 100-mile visibility views are much less frequent now than in Maine and New Hampshire, the trail is quite beautiful here. The key to enjoying your AT hike in Vermont is to appreciate the beauty of the trail, plants, and rocks all around you, instead of just looking ahead to the next epic mountain-top vista.

Day 47- 7/17/15
William B. Douglas Shelter
6 miles
Magic and the Dirty Boys spent the morning relaxing at the Green Mountain House hostel until around noon. Robin gave me some Darn-Tough socks that he found in a shelter and then washed at the hostel. I’m digging them so far. We hiked only 6 miles to the shelter which was .5 off the trail. Everybody contributed to produce a cozy fire. A nice girl named Heather showed up a little later. She told us that she is planning a Long Trail thru-hike, but that she’s doing weekend trips for now to prepare. Our crew plus Heather stayed up long past sunset swapping stories in the shelter. In fact, Rabbi and I pulled out our best story of all.

Day 48- 7/18/15
Story Spring Shelter
15 miles
Today we learned why some hikers call this state “Ver-mud.” However, it still wasn’t even close to as muddy as much of the trail in Maine was for us. A trail-angel named “Miker the Hiker” and his wife cooked us up some hot dogs and gave us juicy watermelon in a parking lot we arrived at around lunchtime. The Dirty Boys were first to the shelter and so we rolled out our sleeping gear inside, but some northbounders calling themselves “Team Push-Wood” camped just outside and hung out with us until sunset. They were refreshingly positive compared to some of the solo northbounders we’ve met.

Day 49- 7/19/15
Melville Nauheim Shelter
17 miles
Easy day today. I really took my time and enjoyed the good weather. Everybody hiked almost completely separately today. The guys made it to the shelter just before a pretty serious thunderstorm hit, with a heavy downpour. Poor Magic was just a little too late to the shelter, so she got drenched.

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