Archive for July, 2016



Gibbs Gardens:

Gibbs Gardens was a great adventure! Thanks Mary-Stewart, Gary and Anne-Marie for sharing your day with me.


7.25.16 … sounded good …

Day 36 Hiking/Day 44 from Katahdin


John called at noon and he was slack packing … Another 10 miles to go.

He was at Kinsman Mountain (379) in NH, outside of Woodstock NH.

So at the end of the day he should be at 389/1800.

He sounded good …


7.24.16 … Cairns marking the trail in low hanging clouds …

Zero Day – No Hiking/Day 43 from Katahdin


Day off to resupply, recharge and recuperate.

Some trail angels brought dinner … And a dog which if you know John is a great trail magic event.

I love it that friends are following him on Facebook and providing support and encouragement. One friend reposted this pic from Mt. Lafayette with this note:

“Following with great interest ( and envy I must say ) a friend’s north to south trek on the AT. John Baker Teague is posting mobile uploads as he takes on this challenge. Here is a cool shot from the trail over Mt. Lafayette in NH yesterday. Cairns marking the trail in low hanging clouds. Beautiful in a spooky kind of way.”

Zero day so he stays at 373/1816.


7.23.16 … “I’ve made it through the Presidents.”

Day 35 Hiking/Day 42 from Katahdin


Long hike, but John made it to a new hostel, The Hostel, Woodstock NH. He’s at mm 373/1816.

He shared some great pics from the last few days, a few of them i’ll share here.

As John says, “I’ve made it through the Presidents.”


7.22.16 … I’m assuming all is well …

Day 34 Hiking/Day 41 from Katahdin


At 12:30 PM, John was at mile marker 360 and making great strides. Although he sounded winded, his voice was noticeably more cheerful. His goal was to make it to to Garfield Ridge Shelter/Campsite at mile marker 363 and then head into North Stockton and stay at a hostel for a couple of nights, resupply and slack pack for a few days.

Day 33 Hiking/Day 40 from Katahdin


No update … I’m assuming all is well.

Day 32 Hiking/Day 39 from Katahdin


So today John re-summitted Mount Washington, not once, but twice and neither time was on foot. As I mentioned yesterday, because of the rain, he returned to the top of Mt. Washington. He began hiked down to the first lean-to where he made his a big mistake. He took the wrong trail, and he did not realize it for about 5 miles. The lightbulb went off when he saw the cog railway base station. The cog railway base station was not on the AT. So, he reviewed his options, took the cog railway back to the top of Mt. Washington and hiked the 2 miles to the lean-to where he made his error and slept there for the night. So after hiking approximately 10 miles, John only showed a net gain of 2 miles forthright day.


7.22.16 … No pithy quotes for my mom, just the facts …

Driving Mama Lindsey …

On our way to visit Jeanne Reid and her mom Jane in Madison. It’s a beautiful day in Georgia, albeit hot.

Two observations before we arrive:

1. On seeing a tattoo parlor, Mom said that she would like to have a tattoo. I said well what would it say, and she responded, “I would just have my name and emergency info.” No pithy quotes for my mom, just the facts.

2. All states look the same from the interstate.

And then we visited … I loved sharing time and space with Jeanne and her son Alexander.

One final thought from my mom… a good one.

My mother did not technically allow her children to watch shows that portrayed people as idiots. That limited our tv watching to a great extent given it was the 1960s. She especially disliked Gilligan’s Island, Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres and Petticoat Junction. Oddly, Hogan’s Heroes was ok. The Germans could be idiots.



7.19.16 … In his words, he had a ‘hell of a time.” … Essentially he had had a long slog in high altitude in high winds in a low cloud with low visibly and rain …

Day 29 Hiking/Day 38 from Katahdin


John called about 2 p.m. He was sitting in the cafeteria atop Mt. Washington (mm 332). Yesterday, he started at mile marker 319 and made it to the top of Mt. Madison (mm 326.9). Fortunately, he arrived dry.

However, by the time he got at the campsite which was about a half-mile from the AT, the rain had begun and he was soaked through. And the campsite was full, so he had to pitch his tent on the side of a hill and get inside. Once in, he took off his wet clothes and put on dry and slept, albeit uncomfortably given the incline of his campsite and the cold.

This morning, he got up, changed into his damp clothes and headed out. When I talked to him at 1 he was atop Mt. Washington. It had been a long, cold, wet slog through rain most of the day. And, yes, he was soaked. In his words, he had a ‘hell of a time.” He was sitting in a cloud in the public cafeteria at the mountain’s top and was hoping that the cloud might move. Essentially he had had a long slog in high altitude in high winds in a low cloud with low visibly and rain. He was hoping the rain would stop and he would hike down the other side of Mt. Washington to a shelter.

Since the rain did not stop, he made the decision to get a ride to the base and go back to his hostel of several nights, White Mountains Inn and Hostel.

I assume he plans to dry out his clothes and get a good night’s sleep in the warm comfort of the hostel.

I’ve had a very pleasant day in the comfort of Chez Teague.


7.13.17 … Failure … that is my thought. An acquaintance, someone I have only met twice, experienced a major failure and it impacts his professional and personal life. I promised to say prayers as I walked …

“Solvitur Ambulando” – It is solved by walking, 2017 Labyrinth Walks, Mercer University – Atlanta Campus, Atlanta GA:

Not sure what I’m looking for on this walk… But I know there is both coffee and diet Dr Pepper at the center because i placed it there.

Crunch, crunch, crunch



Failure … that is my thought. An acquaintance, someone I have only met twice, experienced a major failure and it impacts his professional and personal life. I promised to say prayers as I walked.

And I love it that this interfaith garden is built on an historically Baptist school’s campus.

The site, which is located on an island in the West Parking Lot on campus, also includes a labyrinth and outdoor classroom and is intended to be “a garden, a spiritual oasis, a place where friendship that crosses every ethnicity, culture and faith tradition can grow,” said Charlotte Connah, co-chair of the Baptist-Muslim Committee of the CBF/GA Interfaith Task Force. The task force is a partner organization of the University’s McAfee School of Theology.

“This campus is wondrously rich in diversity, and this committee fully believes that our young people are our future’s best shot at building a better world, one of bridges rather than walls, one of dialogue rather than reaction, one of friendship and not division,” Connah said during Thursday’s ceremony.

Connah had the vision for an interfaith prayer garden on Mercer’s campus three years ago and shared her idea with Mercer President William D. Underwood, Senior Vice President for the Atlanta Campus Richard V. Swindle and McAfee Dean R. Alan Culpepper. A fundraising campaign was initiated through CBF/GA and received contributions from approximately 40 donors representing multiple religious faiths and walks of life.

The lead gift was made by Aziz Dhanani, CEO of Premier Petroleum Inc., who has significantly contributed to the Atlanta area through his involvement with the local Muslim community and his philanthropic endeavors. The garden was dedicated in memory of his parents, Zehrakhanu and Allauddin Dhanani.

“Aziz, you and fellow Muslims have taken a big step by investing in this historically Baptist institution, and we hope you will find this to be only the beginning of a relationship that will cross religious and cultural boundaries and make all of us better and more tolerant people,” Underwood said.

SOURCE: Mercer Dedicates Interfaith Prayer Garden on Atlanta Campus,



7.12.16 … Ziplock, PeakFreak and Hundred Mil saved the day …

Day 27 Hiking/Day 31 from Katahdin


BAD fall — No BREAKS, lots of SCRAPES

After sleeping at the Full Goose Shelter (277/1912), John had a slow start and was at Goose Eye Mountain North Peak( 278/1911) at 8 AM this morning. He had a bad fall in the Mahoosuc Arm yesterday, but no damage other than seriously scraped shins and his ego. He is very grateful to the hiking threesome, Ziplock, PeakFreak and Hundred Mil who saved him. His fall occurred on the Mahoosuc Arm, the 1 mile stretch of the AT that is deemed the toughest on the trail. Well, Steady survived it. He said there was no hiking to it, it was climbing with a 40-pound pack. (And I asked John why his pack was still at 40 pounds since he sent about 10 of the original 40 home. His response was that 2 SOBO hikers had left the trail for a bit and they had divided up their food supplies. He is now well supplied with Pop Tarts. )

John also enjoyed the Aunt/ Niece SOBO Combo – Hawk Woman/Teaberry at the lean-to last night.

Here is a long piece I found on Mahoosuc Notch

The Toughest Mile – Hiking Mahoosuc Notch on the Appalachian Trail |

Is Mahoosuc Notch really the”Toughest Mile of the AT?” Although selecting just one of the 2150-odd miles of the AT might seem impossibly subjective, every AT hiker will eventually hear the reputation of Mahoosuc Notch. Tales of this underworld inspire northbound hikers to hole up at the nearest shelter (Full Goose Shelter, 1.5 mi. south of the Notch) like knights preparing to enter a dragon’s lair. Most of these hikers find that their battle with this monstrous notch is not, however, the “toughest mile” of their hikes on the AT. In fact, many find it to be one of the most enjoyable. A few, upon climbing out of this natural obstacle course, will take off their backpacks, turn around, and dive right back in to continue their explorations of its fascinating wonderland of caves and crevices.

Glaciers cut this steep-walled valley between Fulling Mill Mt. and Mahoosuc Mt. After the river of ice retreated, winter freezes quarried huge blocks of rock from the cliffs, and the blocks tumbled into the notch below, filling it with the house-size chunks of schist that have given this piece of the AT its reputation for ruggedness and put it on the National Register of Natural Landmarks. Hikers here must climb over, crawl under, and jump between these huge slabs and boulders. Many remove their backpacks and drag them in order to pass through the tightest squeezes. Some of the caves hold ice well into summer, and snow often makes the notch impassable even in June.

The gurgling of a small stream, the Bull Branch of the Sunday River, buried beneath the rubble, enhances the notch’s air of mystery.For many northbound hikers, the Notch is the climax of a traverse of the entire Mahoosuc Range—a final challenge to their already taxed muscles. Hike #18, on the other hand, lets the less ambitious (and those who don’t have a week to spare) sneak in a back door to the AT’s wild ride through Mahoosuc Notch. The hike’s route continues on to the summit of Mahoosuc Arm, one of the range’s rugged peaks, and to Speck Pond, a high mountain glacial tarn and home to a beautiful campsite. From here the route leads back to Success Pond Rd., 2 mi. north of the starting point.

Read more:

The Toughest Mile – Hiking Mahoosuc Notch on the Appalachian Trail |

When I talked to him he was atop Goose Eye, about 5 miles from the New Hampshire line and hoped to make make it into New Hampshire today to the Gentian Pond Shelter (286.5/1902.6) and into Gorham tomorrow night. He will take a zero day in Gorham NH (298/1891).

I’m off to get my resupply box into the mail, which will include laminated pages of the AT guidebook to replace his “damp” copy.

John’s aunt suggested that I have a “trail name”. She’s suggested “Gibraltar, ” or “Rock.’ I’m thinking ‘Steady’sRock.’ Suggestions?


7.11.16 … the Mahoosuc Arm. The latter is fabled to be the toughest mile on the trail! Tomorrow NEW HAMPSHIRE!! …

Day 26 Hiking/Day 30 from Katahdin


John is back out, boots, pack and all … No slacker today!

He put his AT Trail Guide in the oven last night to dry out the pages. No, he’s not trying to cook the books.

He called early. He plans to get on the trail at Grafton Notch near Andover ME (267) and end at Carlo Col Shelter (281 of 2189, only 1908 miles to Springer). He planned to tackle Speck Mountain and the Mahoosuc Arm. The latter is fabled to be the toughest mile on the trail!


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July 2016