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The Long Trail : Day 11 : Part 1 : 10/1/20 . The overnight temps were perfect for being all bundled up yet not cold! When the alarm went off the joys of town were the only thing that forced me to sit up and give up the cozy warmth of my quilt. We ate breakfast, had hot coffee and packed up. . I was buzzing from the early morning caffeine and ready to take on Mt Abram. Almost every single SOBO hiker we’d met up to this point gave us grim warnings and harrowing tales of the trail north of here. My mind oscillated between anxious energy and a fierce determination to prove the naysayers wrong. We had 9ish miles between us and town and I was confident we could do them quickly. . One thing I have to remind myself of over and over again is that the fears of others don’t determine my level of ability. And sometimes the opposite is true as well. Others confidence doesn’t determine my level of ability either. Rather than agonize over trip reports, Guthook comments, or stories from other hikers, I’ve found it best to employ the “take a look myself” approach to hiking miles and completing trails. . Today was no different. Mt Abram was the obstacle full of wet slabs, steep trail and meticulous movements. We set off with a fire under us and powered up the climb. I felt alive and in my element. The fluid motions and quick responses of finding the next perfect foothold invigorated me. A little scrambling perked my senses as I lowered my center of gravity and climbed effortlessly until I felt the cool wind and misty skies over stunted pines. We’d reached the Alpine Zone and were suddenly transported to a mystical space where time seemed to stand still and everything around you feels in perfect harmony. . I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. This was fun, this was the kind of adult play I don’t get enough of. Pushing boundaries and finding new levels of what I’m capable of. We savored the moment and kept on, rolling along the misty ridgeline to view after view of vibrant fall colors in the valleys below.