Friday, February 14, 2014

139. Shelter Logs

On the Eastern Seaboard there is a trail. On the trail there are tiny wooden lean-to's called "shelters". Inside each shelter, there is often a mangy-looking half-ripped apart gallon-sized ziploc bag. Inside that ziploc bag is an equally mangy-looking half-ripped apart standard composition notebook. Inside this notebook there are notes left by current hikers, leaving their mark for upcoming hikers to find and read.

Shelter logs have the equivalent entertainment value as television. Sometimes we would only have time to stop and write our hellos before moving on down the trail, but if we stayed near a shelter at night, we would spend some time sitting and reading back through the damp, smeary pages of the logs. Most folks would just leave their name and the date.

Very early on in the trail, I decided that I probably wasn't going to always want to think of something witty or fun to write in the logs. So instead I decided to create drawings that I would leave in each and every shelter we passed. I drew a velociraptor for myself, a dump truck for Dumptruck, a reaper for Grim, a hot dog for Hot Dog, an apple for Apple Butter, a moon for Apollo, etc. At first, I drew musical notes for Whistle. Then when her name got the addendum "Ralph" for the number of times she barfed on trail, we humanized the musical notes by turning them into little pac-man faces violently hurling.

I have requested photos of shelter logs from my fellow hikers, so there will definitely be more of these as they are sent to me. But to begin with, here are all the ones I took photos of:

Somewhere in the Roan Highlands. There were a lot of ramps (onions). Cody Coyote was an excellent, interesting fellow that we were several days behind for a long time. His entries were often to the point.
Just before Dragon's Tooth in Virginia
Somewhere near the Halfway Point
Somewhere in New England
The night that Whistle and Catch were trapped in a fire tower
Everyone needed to go at once.
Somewhere in Maine, while Dumptruck and I were Flip-Flopping.

When Dumptruck and I were Flip-Flopping, we were going South through Maine while Whistle and Grim were going North. Accordingly, I wrote a story for them, backwards as I hiked, such that it would read correctly as they came across the logs. I have them here for you posted in the correct "read-able" order, but you'll notice the dates go backwards. It's about a man in love with a moose.

It definitely doesn't make any sense. 

Lastly, here is our entry at the ATC in Baxter State Park, at the base of Katahdin.

Clever Girl

1 comment:

  1. Awesome, awesome, awesome! People must have really looked forward to your shelter entries. Love the story of the moose...made perfect sense! Love, Mom and Dad