“I heard something slither,” John said, and sure enough, these rock piles have plenty of space for sunning and slithering snakes. Meeting our friend Rosie at the Ensign Cowell Shelter, she warned us about High Rocks – “they’re really tough!” – and offered a slackpack. We decided to take them on with full packs. But first we climbed through Raven Rocks to get there, a jumble of enormous boulders with potential bear dens.
The High Rocks offer a heck of a view and a launch for hang gliders. Then it’s down, down, down atop a jumble of giant boulders. With his new trail runners, John got his rock-hopping legs. “You have to think in three dimensions here,” he said.
With a sunny day and dry rocks, it was downright fun. Then came a couple of Devil’s Racecourses – rivers of rock flowing across the hills, requiring careful steps on and between the rocks.
Some AT hikers rush through Maryland on the “Three State Challenge,” trying to get from West Virginia to Pennsylvania in a single radically long day. They’re missing out!