It’s only 6:30 and I’m laying in my hammock while it rains. I set up just before the rain hit, planning to just wait it out, but not long after it quit, it started again, so it looks like I’m here for the night. Plenty of time for a long post.

I ate some black raspberries today, but not as many as I did leaving boiling springs. That day my hands were stained purple from all the mulberries and black raspberries.

The cicadas are out and noisy, although they weren’t singing much today. The gnats are annoying, always trying to fly into my eyes for a swim. I wear my sunglasses to trick them. The biting flies and mosquitos are drawing blood, but they aren’t too bad.

I put in 18 miles today after having continental breakfast at the hotel. I’m in a better mood than yesterday, but didn’t wake up that way. While at the hotel I reread parts of Zach Davis’s book Appalachian Trials. It reminded me of why I am hiking and that these troubles of mine will pass and every challenge is an opportunity for personal growth. Also, if I try to beat the AT, the AT will beat me. I don’t want to hike out of sheer determination; I want to enjoy this adventure, so that’s what I did today. I focused on the present moment instead of my pain or miles or other people or the next mail drop or getting out of PA. I had a fun day. Oh and I saw a rattlesnake.


I told it to go away and it crossed the trail ever so slowly and then I ran around it real fast.

I haven’t been using my hiking poles much lately, mostly because it’s really flat here but also because in the rocky parts it’s too hard for me to figure out where both my feet and my pole tips should go.

Last night I got Wendy’s for dinner. As I waited for the elevator with my two bags of food, a man asked if I was going too eat all of it. I responded that yes in fact I was. I had ordered the ten piece chicken nugget combo, upgraded to medium fries and drink, one quarter pound cheeseburger with everything and a fully loaded baked potato. He was incredulous and said that I didn’t look like I could eat that much. I most certainly did eat it all though and kinda wished for a frosty afterwards.

Today I ate two waffles drenched in butter and syrup, one Danish and a mini muffin. Way too much wheat for my looking but the pickings were slim. On trail I ate two Snickers bars, oatmeal, several handfuls of trail mix and some spoonfuls of peanut butter and I’m not done eating yet. I’ll probably have more peanut butter and trail mix. I’m getting low on food. I get more food tomorrow in Hamburg. On trail I’m pretty much always hungry.

So, looks like it’s gonna rain a lot tonight with storms. Gonna eat and read a kindle book.


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