DAY 4: STORY SPRING SHELTER - WILLIAM DOUGLAS SHELTER
15 miles. Wet/mild into sunny/warm. Morning drizzle covered my first few miles but tapered off as I began my climb up Stratton Mountain. Dense, rolling fog obscured any distant views from the summit, but my ascent passed through stunning misty vignettes, both mycological and evergreen.
I lingered at the summit, enjoying the ambiance of my misty surroundings from atop the fire tower. I took a leisurely lunch nearby, but I quickly grew chilly and began a brisk descent to Stratton Pond, where I took a quick break by the waterfront.
I pushed through the last 4.5 miles through the Lye Brook Wilderness to the spur trail leading to William Douglas Shelter, arriving just before dark. I was drained: my feet hurt, I was very tired, and I had earned myself a headache for my trouble, but the day’s journey was finished. I tented outside the shelter and ate dinner over light conversation with Manchego and Boulder Patrol, both SOBOs.