New York is becoming one of my favorite parts of the Trail. There is so much fun variety in the terrain and the views of the valleys are spectacular. We had some bouldering climbs today and a lot of other technical hiking that makes the day go by so quickly. I stopped for lunch on top of a nice grassy hill and there was a perfect breeze coming up the mountain. I had a bottle of Coke stashed away and I broke that out today on my lunch break. It tasted better than a bottle of fine champagne!
After lunch, I ran into a woman and we got to chatting. She was amazed at what I was doing and had a bunch of nice questions about the logistics of the Trail. Before I left she blurted out in a thick Russian accent “You are good omen.” I haven’t been called that before and I quite liked it. She was so happy to see someone hiking the Trail this year and it was sweet of her to get so excited. It’s nice to feel so welcome out here. It feels like people are starving for hope. Happy to oblige.
The end of the day was a pretty steep climb at sunset up to West Mountain Shelter with a view of Manhattan across the Hudson. Well, a view of the fog across the Hudson that is hiding the view. I heard about this place years ago and was so excited camp here tonight. It is quite a hike from the Trail but it’s worth it.