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Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Congratulations Howard! That is a great accomplishment. It is amazing how the human mind can focus on a goal overcoming the physical challenges.

Congratulations Howard on your climb up Whiteface Mountain, that certainly looked to be a tough climb... now as to your comment:-
"I don't care what the backpacking weight police say, I'm taking this chair on all my future backpacking trips", I'd like to have a little wager with you that your chair won't travel very far with you on the AT.
Your climb today was tough, however, imagine you have a full hiking pack with 3-4 days food and perhaps 2-4 litres of water. Now that we are talking some serious pack weight your love affair with your "must have" chair will soon fade.

Anyhow congrats again, not bad for an old guy.

Well, it didn't take long to get a comment on the chair. :) It may not make it very far, but we'll just have to see. I suspect it will be the envy of a lot of other hikers as long as I have it. :)

Wow, congratulations! That looked like a super difficult hike. This ranks up with some of the toughest hikes my husband and I have ever done (Wheeler Peak in NM, Harney Peak in SD, Grand Canyon, etc.) Having done this kind of epic hike, I really felt the range of emotions you went through during your challenging hike. Would love to do this one myself! What an awesome accomplishment for anyone of any age.

High Five indeed and well deserved. Great job describing the hike. I felt like I was there with you. Was glad I wasn't there with you :) but glad I got to experience it a little bit through your words and pictures. Really proud of you my friend.

My wife says "you have to admire his accomplishment...you just have to."

In reading this post I began to wonder...did it get him or did he get back home. Then I realized "he's writing this, he got back home.

Now a question: what if you (or anyone) were two thirds up the trail, still going up, and a steady heavy rain set in. What would you do? On up, back down or sit down?

David Mason

Way to go Howard!!!

The rocky parts reminded us of "Giant Slide Trail" at Acadia. So you might want to do that trail later this summer if you want some more training on rocky terrain. I struggle going up but am like a mountain goat going down. Bill zips up the mountain, but doesn't like the down and has coined the term "Butt Hiking" to get him through it;o))

You are really getting in shape, both mentally and physically. Hope the AT adventure comes together, but in the mean time, continue to enjoy each challenge along the way:o))

Great job on the hike! My mother is part of a group of women that do hikes year round. This past winter they did Whiteface later in the day so they were still on the hike when the full moon came up (on purpose). Using snowshoes and crampons. I don't think I would want to do that hike any time of year.

You will find that many of the hikes have those large rocky trails. I end up going from rock to rock lots of times. I find it easier than going up and down over the rocks. We are doing Hurricane next week which is another nice one. Avalanche Lake is one of my favorites also.

Way to go, Howard! It isn't the steepness that gets you on a trail like this, it is those killer rocks and roots. You end up expending so much energy stepping over, around, and on those buggers. Really take a toll on the legs. Great idea to bring the chair! The nice part about hiking is that it isn't a race (for us). So you can stop and rest all you need to meet your destination. Awesome views from the top. I am sure it felt great to accomplish this summit. Nothing like staying in shape. I think I feel more tired when we don't hike or bike than when we are very active. Congratulations!!

Hi Howard. I've been a long-time follower and have never posted before.
Congrats on your hike - it is certainly a worthwhile accomplishment.
Just wanted to suggest a blog which may be of some interest to you - popupbackpacker.com. The gentleman who does this blog is our age and has been backpacking his entire life. He also has camped extensively and started out with a couple of pop-ups (hence the title of his blog). There may well be some very useful information to further your backpacking knowledge and information. I've followed Nick mainly for his camping posts. And I really think you will appreciate his no nonsense, tell-it-like-it-is style!
Congrats again and I have really enjoyed following you and Linda for all these years!
Safe travels!

Grandma Gatewood did it in Keds before someone gave her some sneakers!

What hiking boots do you have Howard? I spent a ton of money on hiking boots all of which disappointed. Then I found military boots on e-bay and was astounded how light and rugged they are - waterproof as well with special heat transfer technology built in. They were also not expensive. Then I thought about how much money goes into R&D for the military versus retail boots and I could see why the military boots are super advanced and they HAVE to perform.

Wow! So glad you got pics of the whole trail and summit as I know I'll never see either of them :-) Can't believe those huge rocks are supposed to be a trail! Great job!!!

WOW - HUGE CONGRATULATIONS and way to go Howard!

Congratulations on completing such a challenging hike! I know you felt such a great sense of accomplishment upon arrival back at base camp, I kept thinking "Trail? What trail? All I see is a mass of huge boulders". How on earth you stayed on course is beyond me. But then again, I fall more into the Linda camp - stay home if it means dealing with that. LOL!

Enjoy your summer in the northeast; can't wait to hear about y'alls adventure at the Schoodic Institute.

Great job Howard!

I didn't get a chance to comment on your earlier posts about a potential AT hike! I hope it comes together for you. I've done a little backpacking in the last few years, like you started in my 50s. I'm hoping to bring my husband along in September.

Anyway -- thanks for sharing your thoughts/training/plans on the AT...another aspect of an already incredibly interesting and helpful blog.

Just make sure you and Linda work out some way to get trail dispatches out to your readership! :)

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