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Sargevining
2015-05-22, 00:50
My Dad and I on the Long Trail August 1983 BH (Before Hammocks), about 60 miles north of Killington. I'm the good looking kid on the left. I'm 31, he's just turned 51. The plan was to hike three days down to Clarendon Shelter and then over to his house which was less than a mile from there. Rain put the kibosh on things on Day 2 and we went off trail down to a lake to call for a ride. (I'll allow the possibility that over optimistic estimates of daily mileage for that section of the trail may have contributed to the decision) Previous to this, we'd hiked another section south of Clarendon Gorge up to his house. At the end of that hike, we went down into the gorge to cool our feet in a deep eddy pool. I looked down and saw something green, dove down, and came back up clutching two $20 bills. This was back in the day when $40 was real money. We put our shoes back on, hiked up to his house, and came back with a snorkel and diving mask. Grand total for that trip was the original $40 and a return bottle of ginger ale.

Dad lived in that house on Lincoln Hill Road for about 12 years. During "the season" he'd hiked over to Clarendon shelter after work carrying a six pack of beer. If there were hikers there he'd sit and share a beer or two and some conversation with them. If not, he'd enjoy one himself, then put the rest under a rock in the stream near the shelter and write a message in the register where to find them. His trail name was Kestrel and he was famous for about 100 miles north and south of Clarendon Shelter for that. Whenever the shelter register got full, he'd bring a fresh one over and take the old one back to then house. I've got them now.

I wish I could have gotten there more, but Texas isn't exactly convenient to Vermont. When I did get up there, yah, we hiked---just like we had when I was a boy. Today Dad lives in Florida (there's some kind of law that says if you in NH and VT, you have to move to FL when you turn 65). His knees finally gave out on him and he's got Parkinsons so he needs a walker or a cane to get around. It breaks my heart but I'll always I remember him just the way you see him there.

He retired from Sears when he turned 62 and finally scheduled the knee surgery he'd been delaying since a car accident he had when I was a baby. Three weeks before the surgery he hiked the Pemi Loop and a couple of other connecting trails on a solo backpacking trip. He was out about 10 days. I told him recently that at the time I thought he was crazy for doing that, but now that I've reached that age I understood why he did it. He said. "Yah. You do it to keep from going crazy, not because you are."

http://i853.photobucket.com/albums/ab99/Kent_and_Karen/Long%20Trail%201983.jpg (http://s853.photobucket.com/user/Kent_and_Karen/media/Long%20Trail%201983.jpg.html)

sheepdog
2015-05-22, 22:41
Good story..good memories

Superman
2015-05-22, 22:53
:dito:

rhjanes
2015-05-22, 23:02
good stuff.....Jeans? I hiked in those in the 1970's up Old Rag in VA.
Wonder what that pack weighed.....

Superman
2015-05-22, 23:09
The first time I hiked the long trail I wore jeans and steel toed work boots.

Sargevining
2015-05-23, 10:51
good stuff.....Jeans? I hiked in those in the 1970's up Old Rag in VA.
Wonder what that pack weighed.....


The first time I hiked the long trail I wore jeans and steel toed work boots.

Yah. Thirty two years ago, I was still deeply mired in jeans culture. The pack wasn't bad---it wasn't mine. Dad put both rigs together so I wouldn't have to take anything on the plane.