Full Moon Overnight Camp

What a difference it makes to spend a night in the woods, especially when the overnight accommodations are just 10 minutes from the house. Last night Auntie Mame, V8, Jody, and I hiked into Camden Hills State park, where we experienced a mostly comfortable evening in most dilapidated of the two crumbing lean-tos up at the top of Bald Rock mountain.
We were met in the Stevens Corner parking lot by none other than the Guthook family, which included Pappa and Momma as well as the Guthook himself.

Guthooks

Guthook writes an excellent bog on ultralight backpacking, and we have hiked together, off and on, in the Midcoast Maine area since we both connected around hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in 2010.
Once on top, we set up at the lower shelter, after we spotted a serious skull and crossbones flag guarding the encampment in the upper lean-to. There was a green tent inside that housed a young couple up from Massachusetts who were taking a low cost, no frills, three-day vacation in Camden town.
The ‘Hooks went back home, but we had supper to cook and bedrolls to unfurl.
The impetus for the camp out was April’s full moon, which popped up over Penobscot Bay at 7:30 PM. We couldn’t have been a better night, or found a better encampment to view the moonrise.

Moonrise

In summer, you can’t see much of the Bay from the lower shelter, due to the leaf cover, but with no foliage yet appearing on the bare brushy sticks in front of the shelter, we were able to lay in our sleeping bags and view the incredibly bright orb climbing across the chilly sky.
The moon increased in brightness as it rose.
Mame and I enjoyed juicy cheeseburgers that she grilled up on the fire pit in front of the lean-to. It was remarkable how much really dry wood was so close to the shelter, primarily due to the fact that so few people camp there.

I was concerned that the Red Flag open burning warning for coastal Maine would negate the campfire, but the Park ranger assured me that a reasonable fire in the provided pit would be allowed.


In the morning, we brewed up a quick coffee, before we headed up to the Hide Away Diner for breakfast.
So, for a grand total of $6, we had the lean-to and the whole top of Bald Rock to ourselves, to view a glorious light show that can’t be duplicated by man.

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About tjamrog

I'm sixty-seven and live in the Maine woods. I thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2007, the Pacific Crest Trail in 2010, Vermont's Long Trail in 2011, and the Continental Divide Trail in 2013 . I am outdoors every day. I offer guided backpacking trips and classes in Maine, through "Uncle Tom's Guided Adventures".
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6 Responses to Full Moon Overnight Camp

  1. Lovely piece of writing and very informative. Thank you for these!

  2. Guthook says:

    The HideAway Diner!? Best corned beef hash on the coast 🙂 Good times, UT!

  3. patmcneill says:

    Another amazing outdoor adventure – and you met a whole family of Guthooks as a bonus!

  4. Clarkie says:

    glad to read that Jody joined you for your outing. nice moonrise photo

  5. General Lee says:

    always reassuring to run into those friends of ours who share equal appreciation for the outdoors while in them – lets us know that they are more concerned with enjoying them than talking about them! can’t believe that place has remained such a secret for so long – i’d take it over Acadia any day. nice write up. tell Marcia i said hi and throw the fish around with Jodi a spell for me.

  6. beckyinma says:

    Forgot about the shelters on top of Balled Rock! Just started my kids backpacking, they’ve been hiking for years.. May hit up the shelter next summer while up that way on vaca! Great writing! Thanks for sharing.

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