And then there was today!
I’m in Erwin, Tennessee—safe, warm, and dry. I’ll be here tonight and tomorrow night. Tomorrow will be insanely busy, since I need to get a shuttle to resupply.
I didn’t sleep well last night. Nightmares! Spivy Gap felt oddly… animally. Not bears, but I kept feeling like mice were going to chew my tent, ot a skunk was going to spray me. Hell, that might have improved the odor. 🙂
The gap was actually a gorgeous place: rhododendrons and tall pines that littered the ground with ruddy needles. Turns out I was really in the gap; I hadn’t thought I’d made it that far.
It wasn’t as cold as yesterday, but I never did make it out of long sleeves. I opted to haul butt and make it all the way into Erwin. And I did.
One enterprising soul paid tribute to the twin themes of plague and dead people by tagging a little rock with… oh, heck. I’ll just let you look at the photo. I laughed. Hard. And I hope it’s true!
The walk into Erwin was grueling. Two big ups, then a massive down. But I’m here!
Saw my first poison ivy. Shape of things to come.
A lot of hikers have been through this hotel lately—some for a week. (Hotel squatters!) I just missed DB, whose trail name has apparently been changed to Clark Kent.
I had a great chat with Snowman, who’s thru-hiked once already and is hiking again with his wife Escargot. I met them in Hot Springs. Snowman does the cooking for them, so I pressed him about what he eats. I’m not eating enough, period. I have to at least double my calories. I dkn’t know how I’m going to do that. Food out here just makes me nauseous, but I’ve come to the conclusion that the uphills are hard because my body has no fuel. Oh, well. I’ll work it out. Adapt!
Heard on the Hiker Gossip Network, I kid you not:
–The virus is now hitting as far north as Damascus.
–Some people have joint aches and think they have the virus.
–‘They’ want to send a hazmat team out to take stool samples from hikers to examine the virus.
If anybody in a hazmat suit walks out of the woods at me with an anal probe, I’m not waiting around to see if it’s some official agency. Just sayin’!
Javelin, who’s left the trail, is going to send me his New Trent phone charger! Outstanding trail magic, and I’m so grateful! Thank you, Javelin! That will be in my Damascus drop box, so I’ll only have to get through two more resupplies on limited battery: here to Hampton, and Hampton to Damascus.
The weather’s supposedly going to take a turn back toward winter: temps in the low thirties down below, so maybe high twenties in the mountains. I might keep that stove for another few weeks.
And that’s that!