At the road crossing, it was not clear where the trail went so I took my pack off and checked my guide book. While doing this, I noticed there was some construction work going on and a big tractor in the parking lot. I happened to see a box and a couple bottles lying on the ground around it and I had a quick flash that this might be some trail magic! However, when I got closer, the pepsi bottle was half full and it was a box of trash. BUT, there was a full gatorade bottle lying on it’s side in the dirt. With some trepidation, I picked it up and the seal seemed to be intact – so I made a gut decision to take it as I was really dehydrated and was worried about catching up to Brooke with only a few sips of water left and at least another two hours of hiking to go.
The Gatorade was a huge help for the last few miles. I made it to the border around 6pm and took a few quick photos before hiking out the next half mile to the shelter. Brooke heard me coming and yelled that we had to get going. She had written a note to Murphy and me saying she had to move on and “good luck”. But, I just made it and we hiked the last .7 miles to the parking lot. Her father and brother were very nice to let me hitch along. We went a couple hours towards Burlington, VT and they dumped me at a nice hotel called The Essex. I was able to get some laundry done and had dinner and a celebratory beer in their Tavern.
The next day, I set up a 4pm bus from Burlington, VT to Boston, MA. At 9pm, I took another bus north to Newburyport, MA and then a taxi home to Hampton, NH. I was home around 11pm.