Appalachian Trail Happiness: Even More Fantastic Fungi

Appalachian Trail Happiness: Even More Fantastic Fungi

z3 fixOne of the things that has really amazed me on the trail have been the mushrooms and other fungi on the trail.  I’ve already done one post on a lot of fantastic fungi, tonight a second series of fungi photos from the trail.

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OTHER ARTICLES YOU MIGHT ENJOY

Appalachian Trail Happiness: My Favorite Posts So Far

Appalachian Trail Happiness: Selfie Progression

Appalachian Trail Happiness: Landscapes

 

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Appalachian Trail Happiness: Maryland

Appalachian Trail Happiness: Maryland

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Sorry about the lack of images my connection is poor.  So, except for a couple of hundred yards I’ve finished Maryland.

Not a hard or long state but the seasons have changed, the days are hotter and water is scarcer.

I have dubbed Maryland the Kingdom of the Spiders. Every day I herd hundreds of daddy long legs down the trail and walk through dozens of webs strung across the trail.

The trails have been nice, some rocky runs, some good vistas, two real new shelters and a lot of college orientation groups on the trail.  I especially enjoyed hanging out with a group from Gettysburg College.

I also so the coolest fungi I’ve ever seen

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The trail is also different in that besides the college groups their are few hikers on the trail. Surprisingly, given my antisocial nature, I really miss my hiking companions.

I’m taking a zero day today in Waynesboro, PA at the wonderful Burgandy Lane B&B, the breakfast nearly approached Mountain Harbour standards.

I will do 5 or 6 days north in PA, break my personal thousand mile mark, drop off at Boiling Springs and then head for NY.

The plan was to do NY &NJ but I may just do some day hikes in each so that I’ve hiked in every state. Not sure how that will pan out. I started this journey amost 6 months ago. It may be time to hang up my poles for a bit and move on to my next adventure.

The trail has provided me with more than enough for the book I’m writing.  I have gained a lot of new and amazing friends. The trail has worked its magic on me personally, stretched me and given me 6 months of happy days my friends.

I’ve done my best to bring you along and will continue to do so as the adventures continue.  I’m glad you’re here to celebrate the adventure and my 51st birthday. Hope you’re all having a happy day as well.

Rev Kane

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Happiness is Candy

Happiness is Candy

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So I’m back in Harpers Ferry as I get ready to walk back to New York on the Appalachian Trail.  My absolute favorite thing in this town is the True Treats candy shop created and run by Susan Benjamin.

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The reason I love this place so much is that it is the perfect fusion of sugar, nostalgia and education. In the shop you can find candy of all types, including the candy of your childhood.

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Or your parent’s

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The candy is separated by decade and even by century. But what I find neatest about the shop is the education, either by Susan, her lovely staff:

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The history of candy is ever on display and utterly fascinating.  There are even historical candy packs that allow you to taste how say licorice has changed through the ages. Of course including a little scroll with the candy’s history.

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Here are a couple of other images from the shop, and Susan is coming out with a new book and expanding her web presence this fall so stay tuned.  Having a really happy day – Rev Kane

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Appalachian Trail Happiness: On the Road Again

Appalachian Trail Happiness: On the Road Again

fix nh1 colorThe clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness                       ~ John Muir

So in the morning I board a train for Harpers Ferry and then Thursday morning I start the end of my Appalachian Trail adventure.  I’ll be walking from Harpers Ferry to Kent Connecticut, where I ended my southern hike a few weeks ago.  I have a little over 300 miles to go to wrap up the 1200 miles I want to accomplish.

atme fix 4I expect that I’ll do around 12 miles a day, not a blistering pace on some of the flattest part of the trail, but it will be enough to allow me to finish up by the end of September.  Looking forward to getting back to it.  Hard to explain what life is like being on the trail, but it’s good and simple and there’s a connection you develop to being out there.

Sometimes we relax a lot

Sometimes we relax a lot

Sometimes we relax

Sometimes we relax

Kingfisher celebrating in Hot Springs.

Kingfisher celebrating in Hot Springs.

Meeting Hanley, the first Twitter friend I met on the trail

Meeting Hanley, the first Twitter friend I met on the trail

Rev Kane with fellow hiker and vet Mau.

Rev Kane with fellow hiker and vet Mau.

Rev Kane with some of his trail family

Rev Kane with some of his trail family

The AARP gang with our host Lumpy on the left at Standing Bear

The AARP gang with our host Lumpy on the left at Standing Bear

Awesome, Backtrack, Rev Kan, and the Kingfisher

Awesome, Backtrack, Rev Kan, and the Kingfisher

It’s also bittersweet, I have friends completing there thru-hikes almost daily now in Maine.  I’m so happy for them, a tad bit jealous, but proud of what they have accomplished.  Proud of what I’ve done as well, but it’s hard not to compare yourself to folks you started with way back in March on rainy cold days in the Georgia hills.

Lots of happy days since then my friends ~ Rev Kane

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Appalachian Trail Happiness: Mt. Washington

Appalachian Trail Happiness: Mt. Washington

IMGP8512How glorious a meeting the sun gives the mountains ~ John Muir

So not having the opportunity or enough functional knee strength to do Mt. Washington, I decided to ride up it in a tourist van.  I was granted with a relatively sunny day on the mountain something to be very grateful for on the mountain.  Once on top I immediately when looking for hiking trash and found these three characters who immediately chastised me for riding up the mountain.

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Jackoby, Dirt Pile and Rube

It was impressive to see how many trails crossed at the summit and there were a fair number of day hikers who had done the summit.

IMGP8540 IMGP8552 IMGP8554 IMGP8615And of course the road crossing of the Appalachian Trail

AT crossingA really cool way to summit the mountain is to come up on one of the cog trains.

IMGP8531 IMGP8580 IMGP8591 IMGP8592 IMGP8605And finally from this very happy day, a lot of really pretty pictures ~ Rev Kane

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Happiness is Mountain Biking: 24 Hours of Great Glen

Happiness is Mountain Biking: 24 Hours of Great Glen

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So as I was visiting Mt. Washington, I stumbled into the final installment of the 24 Hours of Great Glen mountain bike race.  So I cranked out the camera and here you go:

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IMGP8703 IMGP8704 IMGP8708 IMGP8709 IMGP8711 IMGP8718 IMGP8717 IMGP8715 IMGP8714 IMGP8713 IMGP8712Beautiful day of racing and a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

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Appalachian Trail Happiness: Maine

Appalachian Trail Happiness: Maine

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The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep. ~ Robert Frost

If you’ve been following along you know that I injured my knee and won’t be able to fully complete my thru-hike.  I will finish up 300 miles or so I skipped between Harpers Ferry and CT, easier miles.  But I did want to hike in every state so recently I did day hikes in NH and in Maine. I recently posted about my NH hike, and this is one of a couple of posts about my time in Maine.  I decided to do a hike out of Grafton Notch State Park, a little up and back hike to Table Top.

atme fix 7The AT comes down off this mountain, about a 4000 foot descent, this is part of what makes Maine so tough.

atme fix 10Before hitting the trail I made a quick stop a Screw Auger State Park, really cool little area in the park.

atme fix 3 atme fix 2 ATME fix 1There was even some 90 year old graffiti chiseled into the rock.

graffittiMy standard selfie on the trail.

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The hike up to Table Top was about 700 feet over a mile but the trail really wasn’t all that tough.  Who knows, maybe I still have some legs left after all, the views from on top of Table Top were magnificent.

atme fix 9 atme fix 8atme fix 10 atme fix 11 atme fix 12 atme fix 13 atme fix 14 atme fix 15I took a little lunch break on top and took a little bit of a vertigo selfie.

atme fix 6atme fix 16A great hike my friends and my last day hike before returning to the trail full-time for a month. Have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

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Happiness is Coca-Cola

Happiness is Coca-Cola

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Plenty of people miss their share of happiness, not because they never found it, but because they didn’t stop to enjoy it. ~ William Feather

One of the things I crave the most while hiking on the Appalachian Trail is a cold coke.  There exists a photo of me lovingly hugging a coke machine in Fontana that I hope to show you some day.  Today, while in Atlanta, home of Coca Cola, it made sense for me to tour the World of Coke.

To be honest, the World of Coca Cola, was interesting and definitely would be fun for kids.  The exhibits also would be truly fascinating to people interested in marketing in advertising.  There are my friends, some bizarre forms and icons in the advertising world of Coke.

20150817_131536 20150817_125254 20150817_125216There were also so really cool advertising exhibits of old signs, exhibits where you could write poems about Coke or even electronically design your own bottle.  This sign was my favorite:

20150817_131241Simple and in neon, easy choice for me.

The 4-D exhibit was lousy, the 3-D images were ok, the movie a bit silly as to be expected.  However the moving seats were ridiculously, seemingly set up to jerk you around, just to jerk you around, they warn you they may hurt your back.  They truly made the exhibit unenjoyable, the little blasts of water and air were interesting effects.  But seriously, Coke has massive amounts of money, they couldn’t have designed and installed a better set of motion seats.  I wouldn’t skip it, but I’d sit in the back, non-moving row.

One thing, also predictable, but I thought was interesting, was the way Fanta was represented.  In Germany during WWII the Coke plants in Germany could not be get Coke syrup from the US.  So they searched around to find other options for producing soda, the creation was Fanta, fruit flavored sodas.  In 1955, Coke reacquired Fanta and made it part of the coke line.  Here’s how that history is covered in the World of Coca Cola exhibit:

20150817_131735All in all it was a nice way to spend an hour and a half, the tasting room is nuts by the way, 101 sodas at your disposal, one named Beverly, from Italy was particularly interesting, I leave it up to you to taste it for yourself.  A Coke fueled happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

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Appalachian Trail Happiness: New Hampshire

Appalachian Trail Happiness: New Hampshire

fix nh6Wilderness is not a luxury, but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread ~ Edward Abbey

So if you’ve been following along you know my hopes for a complete thru-hike have buckled like my bad knees.  However my plan includes at least doing one hike in each state on the trail and the two states I had left in the north were Maine and New Hampshire.  I recently did day hikes in each and this post is about my days in New Hampshire.  I’ll hit the trail next week an finish my hike by hiking Harper’s Ferry to Connecticut. When wrapped up I’ll have over 1200 miles and will have hiked in every state and done the highest peak in 11 out of 14 states including the highest peak on the trail.  Not bad for an old, fat man :)

First, the drive in turned out to be a bit more exciting than I had hoped because of a random stop in Bethlehem, NH. A cute little town I hit as I entered the state.

fix nh12What made the stop so special was a lunch stop at the Cold Mountain Cafe, where I had a really fabulous lunch, the soup, thai noodle salad and pasta dish were amazing.  For the first time in my life I took a picture of my food, the thai salad was absolutely amazing and beautiful.

fix nh13I stayed outside of Hanover, NH and did a hike from Hanover up through Etna.  It wasn’t a big hike, nor was there much climbing at all.  Basically, just a really pleasant walk in the woods with some great sights and views.  Also passed another cemetery adjacent to the trail, it’s been fascinating how many cemeteries are located along the trail.  Felt great to be back on the trail and to be hiking again, all in all a really wonderful day.  Walking always makes it a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

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Happiness is a day at the track

Happiness is a day at the track

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A difference of opinion is what makes horse racing and missionaries                ~ Will Rogers

I grew up near Saratoga and I try to make it back for the races as often as I can.  I like horse racing, the horses are incredible, I like to wager, the track is beautiful and the atmosphere festive.  I have friends who are dead set against horse racing because of the impact on horse’s lives, can’t argue that they don’t have a case but I do enjoy the sport.

Hell in Saratoga there are even horses on the street:

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Last week I went up to photograph morning workouts, the track is a little eerie that early in the morning but also oddly beautiful.

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The required Krissel Angle shot

IMGP8351 IMGP8330 IMGP8361 IMGP8364 In the morning though the horses working out are the main attraction

IMGP8335 IMGP8321 IMGP8328 IMGP8352 IMGP8329Last but not least the grounds and the fountains are gorgeous, a very happy morning sitting around in the cool air watching the horses train and soaking in the sights.

IMGP8378  IMGP8372 IMGP8371 IMGP8369Finally my favorite shot of the day.

IMGP8376Hope you’re having a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

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