I would like to return to East Flagstaff Lake with a fishing rod and reel combo and spend the summer. For now, though, I will have to be content with enjoying this perfect morning while packing up and getting ready to go. The lake looks marvelous reflecting the cloudless sky making it difficult to leave, but soon I was on my way down the trail.
It seems very strange to start my morning without a horrendous climb, but this is the kind of strange that I could get used to. Okay, so maybe there was a little climb, but it was nothing like what I have been lately experiencing. Even though the trail was mostly flat, that doesn’t mean that it was all smooth. Those Maine roots still had to occasionally show themselves.
From the East Flagstaff Lake tent site, the trail continues to follow the lake’s shoreline for a half mile before turning toward the forest. A few miles later, I arrived at another lake called West Carry Pond. I encountered some wet areas while hiking around West Carry and was grateful for the well-placed bog bridges. The ponds in this area are called carry ponds because this was a historic canoe portage route. It is hard to imagine that I may be walking over the same land once crossed by Revolutionary War soldiers.
After leaving the shoreline of West Carry Pond, the trail continues through some more wet and boggy land until it arrives at East Carry Pond. There was a nice beach at the East Carry that beckoned me to stop and enjoy lunch, so I had a seat in the sand and enjoyed the view. From West Carry Pond, the trail continues through the boggy woods for a few miles to yet another pond.
Pierce Pond Lean-to is where I planned to spend the night and when I arrived, around 5:00 pm, I had hiked 15.1-miles. That might not seem like a lot, but I hadn’t gone above 15-miles in over a month which made it feel like quite an accomplishment in my book. There are not a lot of flat spaces around Pierce Pond, so it took me some time to find a place large enough for my tent. While I was sitting down trying to determine which direction my selected spot was sloping, I heard something bump against my trekking poles, which were lying on the ground. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the blur of a small rodent that zoomed past and ducked into a small hole in the rocks about a foot from where I planned to lay my head. This just would not do. So, I found a couple of large rocks and entombed the rodent in such a way that it would have to be Jesus to escape. I’m confident that the rodent had multiple exits from its lair, but at least one of them would not be by my head.
There must be a rich guy with his own cell tower who lives nearby because I amazingly had three bars of LTE service at this remote pond. I used to opportunity to check my Facebook feed and saw a post with a picture of Cousin Eddy, Einstein, and Cheese standing on top of Mount Katahdin. From what I could tell, it appears that they summited on the 26th while I was climbing the Bigelow Mountain West Peak. Congratulations folks! While my dream summit day would have included you guys, Scar, Boo Boo, BR and O2, I’m so happy to see that you made it to the end.
It seems like I have this entire camping area to myself, but at least I can reach out for some companionship over the phone. It feels great to have made such good mileage today and I hope that I can continue with this sort of progress while I’m enjoying several days in the promised flat land. For now, though, I’m feeling so fortunate to have the opportunity to enjoy an evening at this beautiful lake.
Starting Location East Flagstaff Lake
Ending Location: Pierce Pond Lean-to
AT Miles Today: 15.1
AT Miles To Date: 2,034.6