The Freaking Whites (So Far)

As time goes on, it gets harder and hard to write about the experience I’m having out here.

This week has been really interesting in that regard, actually. I feel like I’ve been doing a LOT, accomplishing a LOT, yet I also feel curbed.

Curbed? No. To put it plainly, I’ve been feeling really shitty.

The Whites are HARD, man. I’m having a hard time. Sometimes.

AH, see? Hard to explain.

Moosilauke was Dope.

I climbed up that mountain like it was my JOB (well, technically I guess it is…) and it felt good. I got to the top with a group of people and we spent time together up there. We also only hiked 10 miles that day, which felt great.

Chill day, tough climb, even tougher climb down.

But we nailed it. Together.

Then I move on to the Kinsmans.

And my world came crashing down. Yesterday was insanely hard for me to finish. Don’t get me wrong, the rock climbing part was fun. But being alone? In the rain? Slipping and sliding?

I mean, shit, it wasn’t even raining all day. It was mostly humid.

But I was so alone in the middle of the woods. And I pulled so many muscles trying to stay afloat and upright.

So at 7:45 pm I have the genius idea to go hike 6 more miles.

Smooth thinking, Wayne. Real good idea. High on caffeine and ready to feel something other than my own internal pain, I said goodbye to the group of girl campers I just met and set out into the wilderness. 

It was a pretty dumb idea. 

Even if it’s only dusk, the forest gets DARK real QUICK. Super dark. 

Was this a way for me to ignore my inner turmoil by putting myself in a scary situation? Maybe. 

Did I end up safe? Of course! I didn’t actually get to hike 6 miles. I showed up at the Lonesome Pond Hut around 8:30pm and the lady working there said “oh my goodness please sleep on our floor it’s fine you shouldn’t be hiking this late!” 

Amazing first Hut experience. 

The hut’s in the Whites sound very confusing, because “normal people” but a bunk and sleep there for the night but you can do a work for stay but you have to get there early and they can’t always offer you a place to stay or food but they also have such good food. It sounds confusing and intimidating. But in reality? It’s not really. You just DO it. So last night when I showed up late, they offered me salvation. 

Anyway, the point is I’ve had a really difficult past 24 hours. 

And so right now?

I’m sitting on a porch listening to GQ play guitar, he’s just riffing and we’re all sitting here quietly listening as the sun sets. 

This morning I felt sad enough to cry because all the people I’d been hiking with kept hiking and I felt truly alone. 

But that’s not the case. It never is. Not on the Appalachian Trail. No, here there’s always a friend right around the corner, waiting for you with a smiling face, so pumped to see you again. Everything works out. 


Everything always works out. 

Fly on,

Lil Wayne. 

 

 

“Awesome” – Rocket Fuel 

It’s an equally empowering and daunting feeling to see all the mountains you’re going to be climbing within the week.

Here’s the deal: we’re doing New Hampshire. Things are going great. They get a little steep, the terrain profile in AWOL’s guide is no help, but for the most part things are good. Then we get up smart mountain, it’s the type of mountain that’s sort of shaped like an L, so when you’re walking along a lower ridge you can see the small itty bitty fire tower up at the top that you need to get to in 3 miles. 

So when you get up there, after huffing and puffing, after your calves feel like they’re on fire, you climb up said fire tower and can see this: 


See that big, blue mountain? That’s Moosilauke. That’s one day’s hike away. 

You’re probably thinking what I’m thinking. “HAH WHAAAAT?” No way. Holy shit. 

Let me tell you, when you get to the actual base of it, you get a glimpse of the entire thing. And you’re stuck with the thought I am going to be climbing up hill for 4 miles.

Spoiler alert: it’s not that bad.

We made it up in 2 hours or less. And that’s what’s been so interesting about these past couple days: the future looks really difficult and daunting, but it ending up being triumphant and fun. 

Every single person I hiked with to the top of Moosilauke had an epic smile on their face this morning. We hiked a big ass mountain. And it was a beautiful god damned day. In fact, some how, despite all our previous anxieties about weather and terraine, everything turned out to be perfect. 

So now I firmly believe that it’s silly to sweat the future. There’s just too many factors that you can’t be certain on. 

As of today, I feel this calm floating over me. Am I still nervous about the Whites? Sure. We got a full blown view of what we’re going to climb this week at the top of the mountain. 

But I’m not too worried. Because I’m going to DO it. It’s going to happen. 

Well, to be honest, it’s 9:40pm and I feel like I’m about to pass out. 

I’ll work on some cool poetic metaphoric realizations for y’all later. 

Until then, fly on!

Lil Wayne 

“How Did I Get Here?” 

I’ve been asking myself that question a lot lately.

Actually, it’s really amusing to think about what my reaction would be if someone came up to me in the past and said, “Hey, in a year from now, you’re going to….” because most of the time I’d be hilariously shocked. 

Here’s some of those scenarios. 

If you’d come up to me a year ago and told me I’d be:

  1. Stealing hand sanitizer from a portapottie on the side of the road in a random town in CT 
  2. Sleeping on the floor in a maple syrup factory 
  3. Climbing up a mountain with metal poles in my hands while an impending thunder storm rolls in 
  4. Sleeping in a random old ladie’s yard eating her homemade cookies 
  5. Eating a plate of eggs made by a kind stranger in the middle of the woods. 
  6. Sad to only have 500 miles left of a hike 
  7. Hitchhiking in several different states 
  8. Climbing up those massive blue mountains looming in the distance 

I guess I wouldn’t have been surprised, but I wouldn’t be able to tell you how I got there, and I’d be so excited. 

And so we hikers laugh every day about all these crazy situations we find ourselves in, endless roaming further into the north. 

Until next time, Fly on! 

Lil Wayne. 

Vermud: A Place Of Great Surprises 

If I had to use one word to describe my time in Vermont on the Appalachian Trail, it would be curveball. 

Vermont was full of beautiful, muddy, unexpected surprises at all of the right and wrong times. Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures from my first day. My phone had died and oh yeah, IT WAS RAINING ALL DAY. That’s right, I did 17 miles in this oddly freezing rain. Which meant no trekking poles, so much mud, and shivers all day long. I straight up ran with my pack on because I couldn’t keep warm enough. But you know what? That day ended by seeing an unexpected friend AND getting to the parking lot JUST in time to hitch a ride with Bobo to the hotel. Talk about perfect timing. 

When I call Vermont “Vermud,” I am not exaggerating.

Sure, the second half was actually really solid and awesome and full of pine. And there were huge stretches of flat land. Everything you’d want from a state! But the beginning? Oh my god. Dude. The….the mud pits were just so huge. 



Literally walked through a river to clean off them shoes. Sometimes I felt like I was just ice skating through the trail. I only fell once (if you can believe that!) 

THE VIEWS CAME BACK!

We rose above the 2000ft elevation line! We were in the sky again! Holy cow! And despite that first few days of whatever, I’ve been blessed with amazing weather. 

Two views from the same place: The Lookout. This has been one of my favorite nights so far. Me and Murphey showed up just in time to take shelter from a thunderstorm (there was a cabin atop this mountain) and within hours ALL our friends showed up and the skies cleared and we all shared a beautiful evening full of stories and laughs and beautiful views. 


There were so many beautiful ponds, which meant places to swim which is basically a freeeee showerrrrr! Refreshing and beautiful to look at. I felt like I was living in a magazine or Nature Valley bar commercial, especially when hawks flew through the sky. 


I rocked and rolled up on Killington Mountain. Don’t people ski here? NOT TODAY. The climb up to this was literally straight up. Basically rock climbing. So much fun, so rewarding, so hard to get back down. 

I’ve been having hard days hiking.

The dense pine forest makes me feel kind of isolated and alone. It doesn’t help that my mind has been a nonstop freaking racetrack lately. Thoughts zoom round and round my brain every day, and it’s so hard to stop that when you have no one to talk to.

But every night I get happily surprised by the arrival of my dear friends and I end up having the time of my life again. 

So, overall, Vermont might be my favorite state so far.

Even after this long winded post I’m realizing there’s so many more stories, so many moments, so much I learned out here. 

I am terrified to face the Whites now that I’m in New Hampshire. But it’s ok it’ll be ok right! It’s fine! Rock and roll. 

So thank you, Vermud and

Helllooooo New Hampshire!!!!

Fly on! 

Lil Wayne 

Breakin’ That Comfort Zone

“Do one thing that scares you every day.”

I may have taken that to the extreme when I decided to run out into the wilderness, a place that I had formerly been (and still kind of am) afraid of. 

Someone once told me it only takes a few days for you to expand your comfort zone. I’ve been totally shattering mine since March 16th, to the point where I’m only comfortable doing things that make me uncomfortable

This week it was cowboy camping. 

What is that, you ask? 

Oh, it is straight up sleeping under the sky. That’s right. No tent. No hammock. No nothin’! Just a sleeping pad, sleeping bag, and a girl ignoring all her worries. 

I owe all of this to my new friend Hobs who swears by cowboy camping. This is him, he’s super cool. 


After a completely calm, non-life-threatening night, I can confidently say he’s right. It’s pretty dope. 

And you know what? I’m ALIVE! Crazy right? But man, that’s what I’m getting at here: misplaced and misunderstood fears can easily stop you from doing awesome things. 

You can do so much if you want to. Whatever makes you happy. And breaking your comfort zone can introduce you to new things that you didn’t know could make you happy! I’m not lying when I say that I’m still totally afraid of the woods. And that night I was certain mice or a snake would come out of the hole on the tent platform we were sleeping on. But nothing happened. Nothing but sleep and beautiful stars. 

I realized I had the tools to fight my fears if need be, the tools to keep me safe. So all that was left behind was this vibrating fear inside me. That’s no reason to put up a tent and rob myself of a dope night!

So, just go do it. Listen to Shia Lebuffe. If you’re afraid, support yourself with the tools for success and then go. Go be free and camp underneath the stars with nothing more than a sleeping bag and a buddy, because life is waiting to be lived my friend

Fly on! 

Lil Wayne 

Sleeping With a Banshee 

Guys, shit you not: I slept in a shelter with a banshee.

 You might be thinking, “haha, alright Wayne. Sure. Uhuh.” BUT I AM SO FOR SERIOUS RIGHT NOW. 

Ok so it all started when we got into camp at 9pm.

 Not a good time. It was cold and misty and dark. It had been a really long day and I just wanted it to be over. Rolling into a campsite in the dark is hard because everyone is already set up and you go around with your headlamp feeling like a loud, disrespectful bear. 

For this reason, I didn’t want to eat dinner. I could barely stomach a cliff bar after the day I just had. Nature seemed to agree with me, because promptly after I got my tent set up the heavens opened and it poured

At first I thought it’d all be fine.

 I did find a good place to put my tent. There was a shelter a stones throw away and then a second one .3 down the path. I didn’t want to sleep in the shelter because bugs will eat you alive if you don’t have a bug net. 

So it’s pouring and I’m thinking that I’m ok with this, it’s fine. I’m writing because that makes me feel better. 

And then I go to get up. 

And my floor is literally, straight up, the consistency of a waterbed. 

That’s right: I am sleeping in a puddle.

“NO WAY! What!” I start shouting and laughing. This is just too absurd. And there’s no way I’ll be dry in the morning. 

Screw it, I’m going in the shelter.

 So I shove everything in my bag fully ready to just ditch my tent and sleep in the shelter. Except when I get there? It’s empty! What a blessing! Surely I am too lucky

Since it’s 11:30pm by now, I think it’s perfectly fine to just drop my entire tent into the shelter. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Plus, there was totally still room if someone needed it. 

I get all cozy and then…

The first noise. This massive scratching coming from beneath me. That’s when I realized in one fell swoop why no one was in this shelter, why it looked so shitty, why there was one right down the path… 

Porcupines. 

They had completely over taken the shelter, scraping it apart bit by bit with their spindly backs. So I had to act like the angry upstairs neighbor banging on the floor every 2 hours, “Hey! I’m tryin’ ta sleep, here!” 
So then I hear this moaning. It sounds like an old woman who is lost and wandering. But I’m really naive and I’ve heard a lot of weird unexplained shit in the middle of the night. So I just figured it was the porcupines making weird noises. 

I mean, have you ever heard a porcupine? 

Joke’s on me. It’s a goddamn Banshee.

 Yeah, I made it through the night no problem. I’m alive! So that’s good. 

But I saw all the signs in the morning. They read, “HIGH BEAR AREA. FOLLOW SAFETY PRECAUSIONS.” Someone had penciled in “& BANSHEE” on the sign. 

It all began to make sense. 

So that’s how I ended up spending a night with a banshee. South Wilcox shelter in Massachusetts. Beware. Beware. 

Fly on! 

Lil Wayne. 

An Open Letter To Connecticut 

Dear CT, 

Damn you. 

Love, 

Lil Wayne. 

Nahhhh alright let’s take it back a minute. Connecticut wasn’t all that bad! 56 or so miles of humid, mostly relaxed, sometimes rocky landscape comprised a wonderful first 5 days back on the trail! 

We stealth camped next to rivers and power plants! 

We drank a bunch and made new loving kind friends in Salisbury! 

We found a really cool leaf! 

We made friends with southbounders because there’s a whole bunch now! 

We had some pretty awesome views! 

We stole hand sanitizer from a random portopottie on the side of the road!


But most importantly, we just had a damn sweaty good time. 

Did I wring my shirt out and watch sweat drip out of it? 

Yes. 

Did I laugh every day, even after I fell down some mountains? 

Absolutely. 

For all the liters of sweat that came off my body, all the rocky steps, all the slip sliding and falling down hills because my sneakers have no tread, I had a much better time than I expected! It was weird hitchhiking and bumming around towns from my home state. But I learned that life is pretty unpredictable, and you’ll be given some amazing opportunities if you’ve got the right state of mind. Sure, my life is far from perfect. Will I let that stop me from grabbing the bull by its horns and rocking and rolling happily through this life? 

Absolutely not. 

Until next time! Fly on! 

Lil Wayne