Mike and Brooke at the half way point on the AT - miles hiked so far.... 1115!
Explain what the half Gallon ice cream challenge is. What flavor did you eat and did you eat the whole thing? How long did it take?
The half gallon challenge is for hikers to eat a half gallon of ice cream in one sitting after making it halfway through the Appalachian Trail. I ate 1.42 liters of chocolate and .473 liters of cherry in about 50 minutes. I felt a little woozy afterwards. We had to do a climb immediately after I completed the challenge and I felt like I was going to tip over. I felt better after a few miles! You can watch the video here.
Tell me about some of the interesting trail names you’ve heard.
Machete Mitch (hikes with just a machete and a military poncho, and thus has no food bag)
What is Brooke’s trail name?
Brooke's trail name is Molasses because she hikes slow. Brooke hikes uphill with all the urgency of an elderly person going outside to check the mail!
Are you signing the shelter log books and have you taken the time to read through any of them?
I typically sign the registers. They are a good way to communicate with other hikers. I put a warning in one register about a crazy hiker named Pro Visions. In the shelter on the summit of The Priest, hikers make a "confession.". There were some pretty funny entries, but it was a little lewd for a blog... lol
How does the filtered stream or pond water taste? Is it actually clear once you filter it?
Stream and spring water tasted weird at first but I got used to it. I chemically treat the water with Aquamira to make it safe, but I do not have a filter so there is sometimes dirt particles in the water. I never drink from ponds; what you want is flowing water because it is typically less contaminated than standing water.
How do you feel now that you’ve reached the official half way point on the trail? Was it harder or easier than you expected it to be?
It feels great to have passed the halfway point. It has definitely been harder than I expected. I did not expect
as many injuries or difficult climbs. But the difficulty makes the experience that much more rewarding! I've had one heck of an adventure and I'm sure the second half of the journey will be just as exciting :)
Mike after 1140 miles.....
And here's a triumphant Brooke after a long and hot day. Way to go Brooke!!
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(All photo's property of Mike McLaughlin. Do not reproduce without permission)