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Carey Kish

Carey Kish of Mount Desert Island has been adventuring in the woods and mountains of Maine for, well, a long time. If there’s a trail—be it on dirt, rock, snow, water or pavement—he will find it, explore it, and write about it. Carey is a two-time Appalachian Trail thru-hiker, Registered Maine Guide, author of AMC’s Best Day Hikes Along the Maine Coast, editor of the AMC Maine Mountain Guide (10th ed.), and has written a hiking & camping column for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram since 2003. Follow his outdoor travels and musings here, and on Facebook/CareyKish. Let Carey know what you think at

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Maineiac Outdoors with Carey Kish
Posted: May 4, 2015

Six-Moon Journey: Sun and fun from Johnny’s to Beauty Spot

Carey Kish is currently thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, a distance of 2,200 miles over a period of 5-6 months. Entries from Carey’s trail journal are presented here (read them all). You can also follow his journey on his Facebook page.

April 24, 2015: Johnny’s Nolichucky Hostel to campsite at piped spring north of Beauty Spot, 13.2 miles, 12:45pm to 5:30pm.

Comfy night in the bunk room. Slept good except for having to get rid of some beer several times. Cold outside during these trips to the shower house, nice inside due to the cranking wood stove.

Sarge made me a cup of coffee in the store at 8. Organized my gear and got my food packed from my resupply box. Always hard to leave a good hostel, a fun place like this one. So I can’t say I was moving very fast to go. Had booked a second night here, but given the unexpected night in the motel I kind of felt I’d been here long enough.

Great sign at Johnny's. Carey Kish photo.

Great sign at Johnny’s. Carey Kish photo.

Johnny’s is the kind of place I could spend days, but that won’t get me to Maine. Gave my extra night to Animal, who had just pulled in. He’s on a limited budget and has been a real good guy. It was a good thing to do and he sure appreciated it. Gave him a bunch of my extra food too.

Sat out front in the sun and wrote for several hours. The 9am breakfast van to town took off, a record 23 people stuffed inside. At noon, a van took folks to an AYCE pizza joint. Missed out on both. And worst of all, I found out that tonight Johnny’s is throwing a big party here featuring a low country boil, with shrimp, redskin potatoes and corn-on-the-cob. Damn.

Called Fran and then threw the pack on and took off across the bridge. Must keep moving north.

Red Hot from Biddeford ME hikes over Beauty Spot. Carey Kish photo.

Red Hot from Biddeford ME hikes over Beauty Spot. Carey Kish photo.

Beautiful sunny day for a walk. Thought I might only go the 5 miles up to Curley Maple Gap Shelter, but got there in under two hours. Too early to stop. Kept climbing the 4 miles to Indian Grave Gap thinking that would be it. Highway crossing there, unappealing place to stay. Next water was 4 miles ahead so off I went.

Ended up climbing over the open summit of Beauty Spot with Red Hot, a fellow Mainer from Biddeford. On down the other side to see tents at a campsite. Seemed too soon to be the piped spring mentioned in the guidebook, but it was. Several hikers already pitched here.

Good conversation as we all cooked dinner, just what I needed. Leaving town often gets me down and I needed this boost of other good people and some good talk. More people arrived so there must be 6-7 tents here.

Getting cold out so I returned to the tent. Weather for tomorrow is uncertain, probably rain. Over Unaka Mountain and on to ??

Campsite north of Beauty Spot. Carey Kish photo.

Campsite north of Beauty Spot. Carey Kish photo.


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