Monday, January 14, 2019

Closer to Home - Mt Davis, Pennsylvania

Some high points aren't as spectacular as Colorado's or Maine's.  Even still, the trip there and who I go with are important to the story.

When I was just a child, growing up in Connecticut, even before my family moved to Florida when I was just 8 years old, we used to hike Sleepy Giant State Park.  It wasn't a difficult hike, after all my 7 year old self, and my sister at 5 years old were able to do the hike without difficulty.  With this in mind, I thought the best person to accompany me to the Pennsylvania's high point in September of 2018 would be my 8 year old cousin Teddy, who also lives in Pittsburgh.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Going to Colorado to "Get High"

Early July I noticed something odd about my work schedule - specifically the last 3 days of the newest one to come out.  I work at the Emergency Department of my local hospital as an ER Technician, so my schedule can change from week to week.  Typically, the next month of the schedule comes out just before we put in our requests for the following month, and I usually work a mix of 8 and 12 hour shifts, which has me actually working only 4 days a week.  Surprisingly, they scheduled me with the last 3 days off in a row - the 17th, 18th, and 19th of August.

Thinking quickly, I requested off the 20th, 21st, and 22nd.  Now I had 6 days of non-Vacation Time vacation to work with.  I started looking for cheap flights that put me near a "fun" high point.  One of the least expensive was to Denver, Colorado.

My exact thought as I took this picture outside Boulder:  "I hope that's what I'm heading to hike."

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Where The Light First Touches

Katahdin looms over the road
on the approach to Baxter Park.
It turns out that hiking websites are written for hikers, and that a route labeled "Very Strenuous" is in fact "Very Strenuous" for a typical hiker.  Around December of 2017 I decided that I should go out to Katahdin in Maine - a mountain in the middle of nowhere - and climb to the top of Baxter Peak, the tallest point on the mountain and the highest point in the state of Maine itself.  Henry David Thoreau made the mountain famous by writing "On Trails", but I didn't know that.  He and others believed that Katahdin was where the light first touched the United States each morning.  I had merely been using Google Earth while bored during night shift at work and found a cool looking mountain in the middle of the wilderness in Maine.

"Maine" was important as opposed to any other state, as it was not only a state I had never been to, but also a state close (enough) to my sister Margaret who lives in Boston with her fiance.  As important as spending time with my sister was - reason enough for such a trip - Margaret was familiar with camping, while I hadn't slept a night outside since high school.