Those of you who know me know I HATE hot weather. My favorite season is fall, then winter, and spring and summer are tied for last. Some say I should do my thru-hikes in spring, with its cool weather, but I guess I fear/hate ticks more than heat. Summer is out because of the heat and mosquitoes. Winter is out for obvious reasons. That leaves fall. Ideally, I’d hike in October. But I always have a work conference then, so I start in September and hope for cool weather.

In 2013, I complained about an endless string of days in the upper 70s and low 80s. How I wish I had those back! Today was yet another sunny day in the 90s. Grrr! Oh well. What can you do but go hike?!

Waterville was pleasant, and then I plunged into the Southern Kettle. Eagle was one of my favorite sections, as always — pretty, plus reasonably nice terrain. And Blackhawk was lovely. But gosh, it was hot. We saw a fair number of people on the trail, being a holiday weekend, and everyone looked beet red and exhausted. And while there weren’t many bugs out, there always seemed to be one mosquito buzzing in my eyes, nose or ears. Just one, but gosh, it was annoying! I wanted to say, “Just bite me, suck my blood, and leave!” 

My hands and fingers are swollen from the heat, which isn’t unusual. But I’ve got swelling up half of my arm. And lots of rashy spots on my legs, even though I wear calf sleeves. Is that from the plants? Must be, I guess.

©2018 Melanie McManus – All Rights Reserved

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