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  • McRat
      Post count: 15
      #47708 |

      With Gary (scoutmaster) still on the injured reserve list nursing a sore knee from the Moosilauke trip, the honor of heading the Fool Scout Flag Patrol was thrust upon me.

      Dennis and I had tested another flag rig earlier in the week, and while far from record-setting, it was a decent design for our needs. We got a late start but managed to arrive at the trailhead on time, where MadRiver, Steve and Christa, and Steve’s co-worker Mike were waiting. Shortly before 9:30 we were on the rocky but mostly-gentle grades of the Osceola trail with a couple of 10-foot lengths of PVC drain pipe in tow.

      The day had started out rather foggy, but there were some hopeful signs of clearing as we hit the switchbacks. We ascended the final pitch and saw a flag hanging from the trees – Gram and her crew had already arrived.

      We assembled our rig, raised our new 6×10’ flag, and admired our handiwork. Gram had made a great poster which we hung on the flagpole, explaining the event and including photos from other peaks.

      The best thing about Flags on the 48 (aside from remembrance and patriotic fervor) is having an excuse to really take some time on the summit. We flew the flag until 3:00, during which time we got to hang out, chat with other hikers, and meet friends old and new. It was fun chatting with Drewski and a rare summer sighting of Cath Goodwin, as well as my first trail sighting of Keith D’Allesandro. Before long Hikerfast arrived at the summit and we had something of a Foolish reunion.

      A local boy scout troop had caught the spirit of the day and brought up their own flag and rig making Osceola a two flag summit!

      We headed carefully down the wet slab sections and arrived back at the parking lot without incident. Dennis, Bob and I headed over to the KOA for feasting and fun.

      Thanks to Trekman for the delicious Willey House Septemberfest ale, Adventurous for the excellent safety tips, and DaveBear and SunshineChris for their company and firewood during mojito hour. It was great meeting up with tfr finally, as well as seeing the Mr. And Mrs. SilentCal, MichaelJ and Unadogger, Leaf, and probably a person or two I have forgotten. (sorry!)

      I was saddened that Squeaky couldn’t make it this time, but I expect she’ll be on a lot more hikes with me soon enough. In her absence, I was able to continue the McRat schtick another day, repeating jokes that shouldn’t be repeated and carrying on into the wee hours. It’s not easy being a fool, but someone’s gotta do it.

        Post count: 60

        It was a pleasure meeting the Fool Scouts – hope we meet on the trail some day under less somber circumstances than a 9/11 memorial.

        McRat’s rig was awesome – great job – wish we’d had a little more wind to display the flag. My son-in-law saw the flag with a telescope from the Waterville Vally floor.

        I posted up some photos, didn’t have a good one of the Fool Scouts all together – hopefully you do.

        All in all, a great memorial.

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