Forums 2016 Flags on the 48 2016 Trip Reports Mt Waumbek

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      The plan was to start hiking up at 9am sharp. The weather told me no. I told myself all week that the only thing to keep me from hiking this mountain would be thunder and lightning. We arrived at the Irving on Route 2 around 8:20 as soon as I stepped out of the car. It started to downpour. No problem then the lightning and booming started. Waited that out and since church was starting we all moved our cars to the trailhead so they could have our spots. My friend Terri Trier texted the Channel 9 weatherman, Josh Judge, to figure out when these would stop. He said wait an hour. Finally around 9:45am the rain slowed up and we decided to go.
      Hit the Mt. Starr King trail around 9:52am. I wanted to hike as a group but I haven’t hiked with some before and I get pretty winded going up and my pack was pretty heavy. I brought so much gear because I was worried of how keeping the flagpole up was going to work. Finally my friend Kerry Whalen made me distribute some of the gear. I wouldn’t give up the flagpole. I told the fast people we would meet up at Mt Starr King. We were late going up as it was but we met up and were passed by hikers who knew what we were up to so that was cool. At Mt Starr King met some more hikers, who had heard about the FOT48 but didn’t know what it was about. I told them to meet us there, definitely could use help raising the pole.
      At Waumbek, looked around where to plant the stake, my friend Daniel Velchev suggested we should just tie it up next to the dead tree. The extra people turned out to be a blessing. Not once did the flag touch the ground while we were manipulating the pole. We got the pole stretched out and together raised the flags 28ft in the air. Zip tied it to the tree and got the guy lines up. Wow what a moment to see them fly in the air! We were an hour late but we did it!
      It was special to me to have my friends want to hike in the rain to a treeless summit,and then to meet a bunch of hikers to help us raise the flags in honor of the day. A couple came up at 1:58pm glad that they did not miss seeing the flag. We flew the flag til about 2:15pm and made our way back down to our vehicles. I thought I did a good job policing the area but somehow I lost my rain hat.
      Thank you for the honor of allowing me to be a part of this remembrance. I didn’t want to watch or listen to stories about September 11th this year. I will Never Forget. The day always makes me angry and sad. This year I was proud to live in this state and to live in this country. God Bless America!

      Michelle Schlickman
      Mt Waumbek PC 2016

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