PA Hike #14 - PA 645 to Hertline Campsite to PA 183 to 501 Shelter to PA 645

[Leg 1 - Yellow, Leg 2 - Blue/Cyan, Leg 3 - Green]

Pre Hike Log - First Preliminary Hike
note: This hike was done as a Preliminary Hike for my 1996 Chunk Hike so many of the notes pertain to equipment, food and what worked/didn't work during the hike


On the AT at last taking a break and eating a snack at an overlook. I have eaten / drank up to this point: oatmeal and OJ/Pinnapple at home. Grapeaid, peach ice tea and a bluebarry muffin on the road and a nutri-grain bar right now. The day is BEAUTIFUL!

9/2/95 12:01pm

Hiked from 645 to Fister Lookout (that is were I was at the last entry) to the 501 shelter. I thought the KTA was nuts putting a shelter by a road like that until I saw it. It is right next to a house and the people take care of it and hikers. There are magazines, bug candles, a dart board, a solar shower ect. ect. This is a MUST STOP next year! This will seem like a Hilton after a long days hike I am sure and they ever sell ice cream!

A Man and his daughter stopped in, just on a day hike. He said "nothing fancy." He must be new to the trail :-)

Lunch consists of underwood Honey Ham and crackers. It is a little better than Philmont spreadables, but not by much. But I WOULD eat it again. (a quick 360 cal too boot - just for the ham).

9-2-95 3:30pm

Made it to what I think is Hertline campsight after leap frogging a family (who's 2 boys are cub scouts) most of the afternoon. Eating dinner (or a snack) I am not sure wich. The concocktion goes as follows:
  • 4-6 oz of cheeze whiz
  • 1 package of oriental noodles
  • 1.5-2oz of bacon bits
    One note on Oscar Mayer Real Bacon Bits THEY ARE SALTY!

    Equipment notes so far:
  • convertable nylon pants are GREAT!
  • Solid stuff sack for food Is ROTTEN! Get a see through for thru-hike
  • Never touched Guide book once. Used map and thru-hikers handbook.
  • might whant to buy a second pair of convertable pants and just take the top part (then you have 2 pair of shorts that BOTH convert)

    Hiked only 5 miles today but mileage was NOT the purpose of being here!

    P.S. Dinner was too salty and I had to heat water to clean up pot.

    9/2/95 5:19pm

    After dinner I read the register and found out that there is a pond 0.1 miles up the trail (the thru hikers handbook said swimming was permitted if you can stand the cold water) so I put on my swim trunks and went down. I only got into the water up to my upper leg. It felt great though.

    Now I am almost board. I hung up my food, got changed, did all the other camp chores.

    I do know that the thru-hike is still a great idea. I feel more confident that, with a few more of these hikes, I will BE READY for 96.

    I did come up with a trail name for me "Kicking Sparrow". It has a number of symbolic meanings. First is the referance to "Kicking Bird" the medicin man in "Dances with Wolves". So there is the medicin man tie in. Then the referance to my Woodbadge totum of the Sparrow (self explainitory) I am using it on this hike for signing the trail registers with a ME -> GA 96? after it.

    G-D it is good to be here!

    More gear evalusation: the FLEECE SOX make hiking (or walking) in Teva`s much more comfortable. I think I could almost hike in that combo if an emergency occured. BRING THEM!

    9/2/95 6:41pm

    Was still board so I decided to cook annother dinner. Was a tad hungry, but not much) made the rice and mushroom gravy with just about a cup of water (maybe a tad more) and simmered it untill it looked right. Made it in the frying pan and then put water on the stove in the pot for clean up. I know I could conserve on fuel a bit but I know I am doing the "worst case cinario" calculation for fuel. As for the dinner it is ok (except it takes forever to cool down so you can eat it) might want to add some dried mushrooms next time (since the gravy didn't have any ... and they call it mushroom gravy?) Bug again a good meal ... maybe I should have started cooking on the trail before now ... I realy enjoy this. Another idea: add beef jerky cut up into bits (just NOT salty stuff like that bacon!)

    9-2-95 8:23pm

    Woke up after sleeping about 1+1/2 hours had to piss and my head was all stuffed up (thank G-d I left the antihistamin in the pack.)

    Some things I have not mentioned yet. I have with me my medicin pouch. I thought I would pick up a stone like in the movie with the "Harvard Bum" I forget the name but it stars Joe Pessie (sp). But instead it contains an acorn. I thought it was appropriate since the AT was an acorn that I hope will be a mighty oak of an adventure in '96. It also contains campfire ashes, but I need a better container to carry them in, a zip lock is just to big.

    My light bulb just burnt out but I was able to change it in the dark .... amazing. Goes to show I know my gear. Well the drugs kicked in so I am going to get some sleep. Good Night.

    9-3-95 7:18am

    Up at 6:51 after making a "few mistakes" sleeping (as Steven Wright would say). All packed except for food and water. Eating 2 cherry poptarts for breakfast. Notice: I was almost fully packed in 15 min!

    9-3-95 8:39am

    Been hiking since 7:35 and now on my first break and munching on dried pinnapple.

    One note about last night: I WAS COLD. Should have brought warmer sleeping bag.

    9-3-95 9:27am

    Got to PA183 then hiked back to the Historical Marker and took a break. Ate mid morning snack of a nutri-grain bar.

    Note on equipment: on the pack the sholder straps can be removed and washed. Also the tailbone pad is in a pocket so it too can be washed. I think (need to prove) that the hipstrap can also be removed (it seems to be velcrow-ed in) so that would solved the pack stink problems if true.

    9-3-95 11:27

    Made it back to the campsight (yes I WAS carying my pack) and eating a lunch consisting of and english muffin (wich does pack WELL) Havartti cheeze, beef jerky and Ice Tea. Plan on staying here for at least one hour.

    9-3-95 3:06pm

    Since I hiked an unplaned 7 miles (I decided to hike to 183 instead of going back to 645 then to Blue Mt camp site / William Penn Shelter) I decided to stop at 501 Shelter again, but this time stay the night. Good Hike today with great weather. A funny thing did happen today, I terrified a Doberman (Dog that is) out of his mind. I don't know if it was the smell, my yuppie stick or what, but I found it funny.

    Equipment note: find something other than cotton boxers to wear! They hold the sweat and kill your butt!

    Total Milage for the day 10+ miles.

    9-3-95 5:15pm

    After 1 hour nap and a very cold shower I am cooking dinner wich will be rice (1/2 cup), 2 pks of cream of chicken cup a soup, and one can o fchicken chunks with 1+1/2 cups of water. Made it just a tad tin so I added some salteens to the mix, Works Great! Also made up a batch of ice tea to drink (again food to hot for too long) and some cleaning water for dishes.

    Note: Vasque (customer service) phone# 1-800-224-HIKE

    9-3-95 6:30pm

    Three people now in shelter. They are all thru-hiking southbound. They offered advice:
  • Don't need a tent as long as you avoid bug season in Maine. But take a tarp.
  • One does mail food to himself, the others have not said.
  • Clothing matches mine (swim trunks)
    One has a 20lb pack w/o food the one other said he is carying aprox 45lb one was too tired to talk. I am sure more is to follow.

    9-3-95 8:10pm

    All the south bounders know each other, of course, so I have not gotten much more out of them. They did say "Don't worry about milage in GA (at the begining) the 20 mile days will come when you are in shape" wich is nice to hear. I also see that thru-hikers do take candle lanters, well at least one. Oh yes vitamins are taken on the trail as the books say.

    9-4-95 8:35am

    Up this morning at 7:45am. Ate pop tarts, a nuitrigrain bar and HOT pinnapple/orange drink. The thru-hikers all ate hot breakfasts wich surprised me, also there fuel consumption is meger. 22oz only needed to be filled 2-3 times since Maine.

    Going to give the gouple (who were visiting the Three thru-hikers) a ride to Port Clinton Today.

    9-4-95 1:05pm

    Hiked out with the 3 thru-hikers and the visiting couple. Did find out that the most freindly thru-hiker (and the one who shared the most wisdom) was Eric "True American" (or was it the "All American"). All three wished me luck for next year. While hiking out and talking to them I felt like part of the thru-hiking community. It FELT SO RIGHT!

    Oh yes as I thought, all the thru-hikers carried the maps, data book and thru-hikers handbook.

    I did try some home dried bannana chips, what a difference from those tastless things they call "bannan chips". They all said get a food dehydrator and do some of your own food (especially tomato sause they said!)

    My experiance with them just tells me I am on the right track for a successful thru-hike in 96!

     A.T. North 
     A.T. South