Huge beaver dam and pond on the Superior Hiking Trail near Normanna Road.
Today we were starting out from the mosquito-y parking spot on Normanna Road. It was going to be our first of four nights camping. But it was raining in the morning – not in the forecast – so we decided to wait it out before starting. Why start out and get immediately soaked?

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So we got on the trail at 11 a.m. The day’s hike was O.K. There were a fair number of mosquitoes, but luckily we had bug nets. There was still a lot of mud on the trail, but a lot of the time you could walk around the worst spots.

Good-bye, Normanna Road

One of the best parts of the day was walking alongside a HUGE beaver dam and seeing the resulting lake. Oh, and hearing View of dead trees in standing water under a blue sky with puffy, white clouds.grouse drumming. I wish we could see them, but hearing them is nice, too. We also hear two specific bird calls a lot. I wish I knew what they were!

We met one section hiker today: Leah, a lovely young lady who had just graduated from St. Olaf and wanted to do some hiking before heading back home to Connecticut.

Setting Up Camp

Our campsite tonight was great (Big Bend). Ed set up our Big Agnes tent and I set up my Eno hammock. (I love both, and can’t decide which is better.) Water was just a few paces away in the river. The mosquitoes were still out, though, so we had to wear our bug nets for dinner.

Ed found two ticks on his legs while hiking, then found one on my butt during our evening tick-check. YUCK! He tried to pretend it was just a mosquito so I wouldn’t freak out, but I could tell by his voice what it was. (And yes, I freaked out.)

At least he saw it.

Backpacker walking along a narrow boardwalk with green vegetation surrounding.
A Fall

One bad thing happened when I went to get into my hammock. I have a new underquilt that is the same color as the hammock. As it was dusk, I couldn’t see well and sat down in the quilt, not the hammock. Well, I promptly crashed to the ground and hit my tailbone on a tree root. OUCH! I think I bruised my tailbone pretty badly.

To make matters worse, it got down to the low 40s F. (4-5 C.) so I froze in my hammock, despite the underquilt. I guess I should have had a blanket and warmer clothes. Oh well, live and learn. But I only got about two hours of sleep last night. 🙁


MN NCT miles today: =17 (27.4 km)
MN NCT miles to date: 85.5 (137.6 km)
Total SHT miles to date: 85.5 (137.6 km)
NCT miles to date: 372.1 (598.8 km) 
Total NCT miles to go: 4,227.9 (6,804.2 km)

©2018 Melanie McManus – All Rights Reserved

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