|Mt Katahdin as seen from South Turner Mountain. I ascended the left skyline.|
One advantage of climbing Katahdin separate from an AT hike is your flexibility in route choices. I camped on the eastern side of the peak (the AT comes at it from the west) and chose the "Knife Edge" ridge trail. It was a fun, scrambly route with definite drop-offs and exposure, but a razor-blade it was not. There were a few admonitions from fellow campers to look out for certain tricky points on the trail, but I honestly didn't notice anything abnormally difficult. I think too many folks want paved boulevards to ease their way up tall mountains. It's supposed to be hard! Thanks Governor Baxter!
|Katahdin's Knife Edge|
|The AT the easy way: Back in January, I hiked up Springer Mountain in Georgia. And then drove to Maine.|
With a commanding view of the St. Lawrence River, Quebec City controlled access into the interior of the continent and was strategically important to both French and British colonial ambitions. As a result the city is heavily fortified, with walls, gates, towers, and a citadel that stand to this day. Combined with the winding narrow one way streets, sidewalk cafes, colorful flower boxes, weathered limestone churches, impressive hotels, and French-everything you'll excuse anyone for thinking they are in Europe instead of North America.
|Chateau Frontenac, the most famous hotel in Quebec|
|Porte Kent, Quebec City|
|Basilica de Notre Dame, Montreal|
I said "au revoir" to Quebec and continued west to visit Canada's capital city of Ottawa. My first day in Ontario and I had to spend the night in jail!
A jail hotel! The coolest place ever! Old stone and wrought iron galore. My cell was only about 4x8. I think I would have volunteered for the death penalty instead of spending my life in there!
I posted bail in the morning and walked over to Parliament Hill to witness the Changing of the Guard, a ceremony in tribute to Canada's place in the British Commonwealth. If Quebec City could have been North America's Paris, then Ottawa was London. A pipe and drum band leading a company of redcoats in bearskin shakos!
|With Canada in our backyard who needs to travel to Europe?|