Day 84: Chillin’ and refillin’

Daleville, Virginia

Just chillin’ in Daleville. Well… not so much chillin’ as running around trying to get a bunch of errands done. Typical weekend, right?

I’m currently enjoying a massive cup of coffee in a Starbucks-like stripmall coffee shop. Hey, works for me.

When the world opens at around 8, I’ll start hustling. First up: Resupply. I’m planning another big one, but I honed my menu and quantities last night. Hopefully I’ve shined up the system so I don’t get into the next town with 2 pounds of food, like yesterday. Carrying 2 extra pounds is insanity.

The only problem I have is that I’ve reached peanut saturation. If you’re stoveless, nuts are a big staple.

Next stop: outfitter. If you were curious, my Aqua Mira lasted through precisely yesterday. I never did have to use that bleach—another thing that worked out perfectly despite my needless fretting.

Other stuff on my outfitter list: a new pack cover, tent stakes, possibly a new shirt (mine is disgusting and also too big now, which means extra weight), textile glue, and a bunch of other little things. Permethrin if I can get it. Maybe DEET, although I have big issues with that [1: I don’t want to melt my gear; 2: I don’t want to marinate for weeks in something toxic enough to melt my gear], and I’m undecided. The picaridin isn’t scaring anything away, and it’s awfully hot for long pants. Heat index today is 95. On the other hand, the flies and other bugs are chewing me to pieces. The swelling is bad, then the itching is just another discomfort I’d rather address if I can, to maximize efficiency.

Then: UPS store. I’m biting the bullet and sending home my fleece shirt (or what I use as a fleece shirt). That’s 8 or 9 ounces and bulky. Bulk is my big enemy right now. Plus the shirt is way too big. If I get to New England, I’ll pick up a new one, one that fits.

I’m keeping my down clothes and my fleece hat and gloves, at least for the moment. I’m also keeping my Thermasilks. I keep using those.

Then back to the hotel for a bustling afternoon. Gear repair, bug spraying, and food packaging. Then pack up and hit the road early tomorrow.

The next legs are nervewracking. I’ll probably get to Waynesboro on a Friday night. That’s right outside Shenandoah, so lodging’s going to be questionable and I’m already anxious about it. After that, I’m working with my friend Janet to coordinate a much-needed visit somewhere around Big Meadow or Luray. Combined with the resupply issues, the apparently pesky camping rules in Shenandoah, and the inability to do really specific planning (not to mention the fact that internet connectivity is so uncertain), that has me really nervous.

It’ll all work out. One day at a time!

The good news: visit from home! And Janet’s bringing my new Pstyle! Woo! FrankenPee is holding up, but it’s a fragile monster and fraught with the possibility of grand misadventure. Like the one that happened two days ago, which I won’t describe in detail, but let me just say that it took me back to my traumatic toilet-training years. πŸ˜‰

There aren’t too many hikers in Daleville. Daleville and the next town, Troutville, are neighbors, and most of the hiking action is in Troutville. You can camp for free in the town square, and shower and do laundry for free in the firehouse. And hikers love free! But that’s a couple of miles from the outfitter. If I didn’t need the outfitter visit so urgently, I would have pressed on through.

On the other hand, the Super 8 in Daleville is quite nice, and right next to the trailhead.

And that, as they say, is that. For now.



Mission mostly successful. I had to get some fat tent stakes, which will be OK, if not ideal. In fact, they’ll probably be better in the soft leaf-strewn ground.

The outfitter was out of permethrin, which is a fail. So I’m going to experiment extremely cautiously with some dry-formula DEET on my socks and arms. Hrm. I probably won’t find permethrin until Harper’s Ferry. Unless I stumble onto a Walmart between here and there.

Got a new sleep shirt that’s more cottony than my old one. Hopefully that will help the hot-sleeping issues.

And now the massive marathon of food packing!

Oh, guess who I ran into? Buffalo! From all the way back at Lance Creek! Awesome! I’ve been thinking about him lately and wondering how he’s doing! It’s so great to be running into earlybirds here. It ups the hope quotient considerably.



Categories: Appalachian Trail | Tags: | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Day 84: Chillin’ and refillin’

  1. Donna

    So happy you get to meet up w/Jg & Pfl. Enjoy your coffee (I spotted the goody case…u need a Rosemary angel on the AT)

  2. Blackbird

    Hey there.
    Just checking in and catching up…
    You won’t be needing your down anything anymore. (Now since I’ve said that, watch it snow tomorrow…) I think from here on out it will only be hot and less hot and a little cool for you from here until Vermont.

    I cannot imagine why the outfitters don’t sell the bejebus out of that stuff.
    I walked through a meadow up in SNP yesterday and spent an hour and a half picking 85 ticks off the dog, no kidding. Reminded myself why I avoid that place in the summer.. Outfitters should know hikers NEED this stuff. Feh.
    There’s a Walmart in Waynesboro, but I’m not sure they stock the permethrin. I’ll check when I’m over there next, possibly tomorrow.

    Don’t sweat SNP camping very much. It’s just hiking. Only the huts are listed in the guide, BUT … backcountry camping rules apply. You may use a pre-existing campsite if you find one. You may camp at least 20 yards from a park trail or gravel fire road. Only stay one night and use leave no trace methods. No camping: within 10 years of water; within 50 yards of ruins of buildings or stone chimneys; within 50 yards of another party or “no camping” sign; within 1/4 mile of a paved road, park facility, lodge, wayside, or restaurant; or within 100 yards of a hut, cabin, or day use shelter.
    These sound onerous, but SNP is a big place and it’s really not a problem to find a place to lay up for the night. People moan about it, but it’s really a mental block. There are sites if you look. Some pretty nice, all of them are dry, however. Mostly on tops of little wooded knobs and etc.


    • Thanks, Blackbird!

      SNP’s in a couple of weeks anyway. I’ll spend it trying to memorize all those yardage rules. πŸ˜‰

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