Monday, May 3, 2010

I stayed in Erwin a few hours after Atlas and Snickers hiked out to wait for Day Tripper to get back to the trail.  He took a few days off to have a tuxedo fitted for his brother's wedding. I have been hiking with him since then and we are going to hike all of the way to Maine together. 

We hiked over some beautiful balds in North Carolina/ Tennessee and sumitted our last 6,000 ft peak before the White Mountains.  Here we got the weather that we missed in the Smokies- cold, rain, wind, snow, and lots of hail.

We spent one night at a barn that was converted to a shelter.  It was a blessing because there were too many people there that night to fit in a normal shelter.  With the near-freezing temperatures and rain it would have been miserable to sleep in tents.  We all huddled in our sleeping bags and tried to sleep despite the icy wind that was traveling through the walls and shaking the barn.

The next day we had trouble getting out of our sleeping bags because it was so cold and no one wanted to hike.  Up to that point I had been eager to hike every day, but it took all of my might to pack my bag and put on my cold, wet clothes.  My hands have never been so cold.  Fortunately, we had a warm shower in Roan Mtn to look forward to.  It was a hostel day! I have actually been staying in hostels about once a week.  More than I expected to, but I won't be staying in many in Virginia so it's fine.  We stayed at Mountain Harbour in Roan Mtn, TN.  Definitely the best hostel that I have visited so far.  Great people, great breakfast, and a very clean building.  We also watched a movie for the first time in months!  The Net, starring Sandra Bullock and complete with drunk thru-hiker commentary.

I also met Gingersnap and Orange Moon, friends of Bloody Nose from his 2007 thru.  There are trying to finish the trail this year.  They stayed at my parent's house in 2007 and Gingersnap said that my mom's spaghetti dinner was a lifesaver that that point.  That night I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn't stop thinking about spaghetti!  Every since that day I have been waking up hungry every night.  Other hikers do too.  One women risks bears and keeps pop tarts in her sleeping bag for such occassions.

The day that followed was my best day on the trail thus far.  More to follow in a few hours. Right now I have to go get lunch with Day Tripper, Conan, and Backwards.  Then we're going to just relax!! I am taking my second zero day (aka day off) in Damascus, the friendliest town on the trail. 

I wish I could write but my time on the public library computer is running out.

Life is good. That's the only take-home point I have right now.


ps- Thanks for the packages! I'll post a new mail drop list in a few weeks.

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