The Tonight Dough, Revisited

Updated: Mar 19, 2019

June 14, 2018

Destination: Clarendon Shelter Today's Miles: 18.60

Start Location: Lost Pond Shelter Trip Miles: 1685.20

Majestic Vermont
Today I woke at about quarter to six, which is late for me. It stormed last night and rained pretty hard, but it stopped early in the morning as the wind picked up, so my rain fly and tent were mostly dry.

Transformer and I got off to a late start. We knew we didn’t have to walk that many miles today, so we sat for a bit at the shelter talking about a plan to get through the Whites. Neither of us wants to spend the money to stay in huts. We also don’t want to be carrying large amounts of food for the climbs and descents we will have to endure. Resupply seems a little tricky in the Whites because surrounding towns seem to be at least hitching distance away. So far we seem to have a plan that gets us over Mt. Moosilaukee with only carrying half a day of food, which is great. We’ll figure the rest out later. Short term, our plan is to hike into Killington tomorrow, take the bus into Rutland and stay at the donation-based Yellow Deli hostel. I guess it is run by some kind of cult, so it sounds like an interesting trail experience. It will be cheap and is super convenient for resupply, and we can shower and do laundry there, which is great! We’ll just have to avoid the koolaid!

We hiked out together today and the conversation made the day go by quickly. Today was a “weird bird” day. We were walking along and this “thing” came flopping out of the thick underbrush towards me. It then changed course and ran north parallel to the AT and flopped out of the woods onto the trail in front of Transformer. It looked like some kind of pheasant. It was flapping its wings but not flying - just running and flopping around. It was odd. Then, a bit later a baby blue jay flutter flopped across the trail in front of us. It was crying and we could hear, and then see, its parents calling for it and following it. We left quickly to avoid getting dive-bombed and frightening it further. Hopefully it hadn’t fallen from a nest and could actually fly. 

We climbed yet another Bear Mountain. There was one in New York right before the Hudson  and one in Connecticut right after Salisbury. Before descending into the Clarendon gorge there was a nice view, albeit the Rutland airport caulked the view up a little bit. The Clarendon gorge had a suspension bridge over the Mill River, which was flowing rapidly, pregnant from the recent rain. It was a cool little gorge, and suspension bridges are always a little thrilling!

From here we walked up to the VT103 road crossing. AWOL says there is a restaurant 0.5 miles west. I mapped it with Google and it is actually 0.9 miles west, but it was only about 3pm and only one more mile to the shelter, so Transformer and I decided to go. The restaurant is really a deli - Loretta’s Good Food and Deli - and has all kinds of sandwiches, sides, baked goods, resupply items, coffee, and Ben and Jerry’s pints! I got a Reuben, a side of Greek pasta, a bag of black truffle flavored chips, a raspberry bar, a pint of The Tonight Dough ice cream, and two large coffees. I first had the Tonight Dough flavor at Mountain Harbour Inn back in TN, and having it again brought back good trail memories. Also, it’s the best flavor!!  I also packed out another bag of chips. I’m sure I pounded down about 3500 calories there! We used the time to charge our phones and further strategize on resupply in the Whites. We have a tentative plan that will probably be over aggressive and need modification, but it’s a first draft. I wish the huts there had resupply foods like the waysides in the Shenandoahs. That would make things a lot easier. No matter - we will rise to the challenge! A nice man offered us a ride back to the trail head in the back of his truck. Riding in the truck bed with the wind blowing in my hair felt like true freedom!

We hiked into Clarendon Shelter and again, I have no signal. I guess I can paint these all from Rutland. I was grateful for a good day of hiking, the weather holding out during the day, the deli, and yet again the kindness of a stranger. It was a good day. It is supposed to rain again tonight and tomorrow morning. I’m tenting again though - it’s nice to have the privacy and not have to deal with the bugs! I listened to bird song tonight. There is one bird (I don’t know what kind it is) that I hear in the evenings all the time. I heard it tonight, and so I recorded a little bit of its song if you are interested in hearing it:

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