Greasy Creek Hostel, mile something or other
I’m in the Greasy Creek Hostel. I wasn’t actually planning to stay in a hostel. But you know, I was hiking along and starting to get anxious about the resupply in Hampton. I haven’t hitchhiked; it’s one of those things I just can’t get past. Hampton is 4 miles from the trail. So… worry! Then as I was hiking today, I spotted this hostel in the book. A half mile from the trail, and they have a small resupply stock. OK, I thought! Two days’ resupply will get me to Damascus! And the weather report helped; they’re calling for torrential rain and 30 mph winds, according to the HGN. I can carry 7 days’ worth of food. I can’t carry 7 days of food and a wet tent up Roan Mountain.
Anyway. Back to the beginning. Unaka Mountain really was pretty. A carpet of red needles, and tall pines that blocked the sun. It was a shadowed quiet place. The trail wasn’t even visible in places. Luckily, the blazes were.
Then it was back into the bleak brown.
I took a tumble once and my stick went flying off the trail! I had to creep out on a fallen tree like walking the plank. Another hiker, named Preacher, showed up and gave me a hand. That’s the second Preacher! I’ve met two Peanuts. Today I met a second Miami. And here at the hostel is another Dreamer—the hiker gal who got the last bunk at Marian’s last week at Sam’s Gap.
It was a weird day. I fought with my gear all day! Straps, jacket, shoes… it all seemed to grow lumps and tentacles.
Trail magic! A guy named Mr. Byrd (I forget his first name!) was at Iron Gap with sodas! Thank you, Mr. Byrd! Mr. Byrd ran a hostel in Massachusetts for 15 years. He moved here in December and can’t stay away. He was a funny guy–reminded me of a skinny John Goodman. A hiker asked him, “So, have you hiked the trail?” And he laughed and answered, “No. I think you’re all fucking nuts!”
I agree. 🙂
So I’m here at the hostel. One lady runs it out of her house. I’ve got the sofa. No big resupply, but I think I can get to Damascus. The place is crowded with hikers, mostly in their twenties. I know a few—Hey Everybody and Professor. Also, there’s a guy named Bones. We have some things in common, so I’ll be keeping an eye out for him!
Hostels. They’re a crapshoot!
And guess who just walked in? Fifteen!