Day 98, June 20th

Hey everyone. I’ve decided to get off the trail. I’ve been really bored for the last three weeks and tried to push through it. It did not work. I have decided to section hike the rest. For all my friends I have met on the trail I hope to do some trail magic. I am in New Hampshire. Let me know when you get to Vermont. I will pick you up and we will have some fun. I may hike to Katahdin with y’all.

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Day 86, June 8th

In Daleville, VA. I am at AT trail mile 703.7. I am not going to bother updating past days. Too much typing on my iPhone. I really need to start updating this daily again.

Been doing pretty good. Going to McAffee Knob and Tinker Cliffs tomorrow. Awesome place from what I hear and the pictures I have seen.

Had to hike out off the trail a couple days ago to avoid the tropical storm. Me and Gus got soaked. We had to take a 20 minute ride in the bed of pickup truck in pouring rain. Although fun, it was a very wet experience.

Made it to Daleville, VA with Munich Bear and Gretal. Couple of hikers from Germany I have been running into the last couple days. Had a good time helping with their English and learning about cultural differences between the US and Germany. Interesting stuff.

Took a couple zero days here to avoid the storm and check out a hiker festival in Troutville, VA. Not bad, but nothing like Trail Days in Damascus.

Charged up all my electronics and went though my gear again. Seems I have everything buttoned up pretty well for the foreseeable future. Should be around 20-25lbs with 4-5 days of food for me and Gus.

Been really disappointed with the Revolution Tick, Flea, and Heartworn treatment I am giving Gus. I find about 10-20 ticks a day on Gus. It’s a tedious task to pull them off and kill them. I feel bad for Gus having to endure those things and removal. If anyone has a better idea or medication to use please let me know. Lyme disease is the last thing I want him to contract. At least I have not seen any deer ticks yet, just dog ticks.

I have only had one tick attach. I usually get to them before they bite. I think it may be time to invest in some DEET. Bugs are getting progressively worse as the weather gets warmer. Other than the bugs, it is beautiful watching winter turn to spring. The forest is green and full of life.

Animal update: I have seen too many deer to count in Virginia. Including seeing a newborn fawn and it’s mom. Very awesome. Another very exciting siting was of 4 bears heading up to the Audie Murphy Monument on Brushy Mountain. First bear siting on the AT. There was a mama bear and her three cubs climbing trees. Never seen cubs before in the wild. Spectacular. They looked like monkeys climbing and swinging from branch to branch. Snakes abound out here. Seen lots of black snakes. Also started seeing lizards and salamanders more frequently.

Since my mental issues in Bland, VA I have realized that I really love being out here. Slowing down and taking everything in has really helped me keep the joy of this adventure in the forefront of my mind. I realize more each day how I like to hike solo more than with a group. I’m not an extrovert off the trail so I guess I should not be surprised I am not one on the trail. Everything just seems to go more smoothly and more enjoyably when I’m surrounded by no one but myself, Gus, and the trail. Can keep my own pace and decide when to stop or how long to break without having to vote by committee. Anyways, cliche, but I guess the adage “hike your own hike” really does ring true.

Until the next time. Carpe Diem. Enjoy getting up and going to work. 😛

Categories: Trail Journal 2013 | 6 Comments

Day 74, May 27th

Long time without and update so here it goes.

So since my last blog post I took 5 more zero days. I needed a break from hiking. I was getting bored and lost the motivation and reason why I am on this adventure. Did a lot of thinking and think I’ve got it handled. So I am have been back on the trail for 3 days.

First day back I did 16.3 miles from Helvey Mills shelter just North if Bland, VA to Trent’s Grocery. I met Scott and Sherry Blevins who were a very nice couple doing a three day section. I ran into them a bunch. They were very nice and we had some good times. Hopefully they made it back to there car safe and have a safe trip back home.

Second day back I hiked 14.9 miles from Trent’s to Woods Hole Hostel. Pretty cool place in the middle of the mountains. Old cabin from the late 1800s. They had chickens, pigs, and an awesome garden. The second best homemade breakfast I have had on the trail.

Third day back, today, I hiked 10.4 miles into Pearisburg, VA. Saw two deer today on the trail. Really reminded me why I am here. To enjoy the mountains and take in all it has to offer. Made my day. I am sitting in a really bad motel right now. Avoid the Holiday Motor Lodge if you ever happen to visit Pearisburg. It’s cheap, the only good thing I have to say about it. Just finished packing my food bag up from my earlier trip to the Food Lion. So much food… Maybe the heaviest my pack has been since the first week. But I can eat as much as I want and that makes me happy.

So there it is. Back on the trail. Feeling good.

Thanks to one of my best friends, Gent, for listening to me whine about my vacation and threatening violence if I don’t finish. Very encouraging because I think she would do it. 😉

Talk with you all again soon!

Categories: Trail Journal 2013 | 5 Comments

Day 66, May 19th

Sorry about the lack of updates. I will update the days I missed sometime soon.

I just got a ride back to Bland, VA (587.1 mile marker) from Trail Days in Damascus, VA. I took 6 zero days for the festival. Hitting the trail again in the morning and should hit over 600 miles.

Trail Days was kind of crazy. Check out the story: Click Here

The girl in the photo I think is Rainbow Bright. Met her a few times. Heard she is doing alright. Broken toe and will be off the trail for about 6 weeks. Glad everyone is doing well.

It was nice to see people I haven’t seen in awhile. Also nice to take a break from hiking. Feels like my body needed a rest for more than a day. It’s going to be a shock to the system hiking again after the time off.

But, very ready to get back on the trail. I will try to keep updates coming daily again. Since I got the Kindle it has lured me away from wanting to write. Sorry Memere. Hope you weren’t too worried. 🙂

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Day 53, May 6th

Woke up to rain again this morning. Conferred with the other guys in the shelter and decided to wait it out.

Sun came out around 10:30am and I was on the trail by 11:00am. Weird day. Went from cold and windy to hot and humid. I felt disgusting. Dirty, sweaty, and just wanting to take a shower.

Made it to the creeper trail around 1:00pm and at some lunch on an old railroad bridge. The river beside must have been 3-4 feet over normal stage. It was rushing fast and muddy. Too much rain!

The weather started to look bad once I made it the 6.4 miles to the Lost Mountain Shelter. Once I ducked my head into the shelter it starts raining again. Planned in doing 18.6 miles today but I’m just going to stay here with the guys from last night. No motivation to hike up over 5000 feet in this crappy weather.

Me and Gus are sitting in the tent listening to the rain. I may do some reading after I finish catching up with the blog.

Behind the confederate goat herd by a day I think. They didn’t take a 2nd zero in Damascus. I talked to Coach yesterday and she said they got shuttled back to Damascus because of hurricane force winds on Whitetop Mountain. I will be climbing this tomorrow. Pushing for 17.3 or 23.2 miles tomorrow into Wise Shelter or Old Orchard Shelter. See if I can catch up to my group in the next couple days if they hiked today. If not, I may be ahead of them.

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Day 52, May 5th

Zero day ate Saunders Shelter. First zero day not in a town.

-Cold, windy, and rained hard all day.

-Gus wasn’t feeling well. Made a mess on my sleeping bag and fleece jacket. Cleaned it the stream. Glad he is feeling better now.

-Met Rob a section hiker, Johnny Walker, and Blacksquatch. Hung out with them at the shelter tonight.

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Day 51, May 4th

Got a late start today from town. Made it 8.6 miles to the Saunders Shelter.

Decided to stop because weather was coming in. Supposed to get lots of rain for the next couple days. I heard up to 3 inches. It also cooled down a lot. Must have gotten down around freezing. Can’t wait for summer. Tired of the cold.

Hung out with one other guy in the shelter. Kept pretty warm. Rain started soon after I got to the shelter. Forgot to pickup a trash bag to make Gus a rain jacket. Will need to remember this in the future.

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Day 50, May 3rd

2nd zero day in Damascus, VA

-Resupplied for me and Gus to Atkins, VA

-Did a lot of reading. Finished my first book in the trail.

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Day 49, May 2nd

Zero day in Damascus, VA!

-Ate breakfast at the Blue Blaze Cafe. Had a hit fudge sundae at the Dairy King. Love food.

-Got my Kindle at the Post Office. Love it.

-Thanks to Ryan, Adrienne, and Grayson for the Amazon Gift Card. Awesome surprise!!!

-Took a hot shower. Never can get enough of these.

-Hung out with the Confederate Goat Herd of ‘Merica. Changed our name from just the goatherd because we seceded. Lol.

-Had a great time. Met some locals who let us camp in their lawn by the river for free. Thanks Andrew!

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Day 48, May 1st

-Finished my 3rd state. Now in Virginia.

-Did the Damascathon (26.2 miles) into Damascus, VA. Trail Town, USA

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