10-10-12

AT miles hiked today: 12.5
Total AT miles hiked: 1595.5
Miles to complete my thruhike: 588.7

I'm sad we didn't stay in the 501 shelter last night. We got there this morning and it has four walls instead of the usual three walls. It has a skylight, chairs and bunks, plus a picnic table, all inside! Pizza can even be delivered there. I hate packing up my tent in the rain and even though we have met several stressful or strange people and situations here in PA, it seems nobody stayed at 501 last night and now my tent and stuff is soaked.

I have been grumpy and irritable lately but I felt a little better after finding the unopened Coke bottle somebody had left. Yay! Thank you! We also scored with finding pasta sides in the hiker box. I'm happy for chicken flavored rice instead of ramen for once.

I wrote in the 501 register that I was unmotivated in all this rain and I could use some sun please! Then the sun came out, almost immediately, and came and went all day, but kept coming back. Thank you!! Also, there were entire sections of the trail with only a few rocks and mostly soil! Is this Pennsylvania? Oh, there are more unbalanced boulder piles. Yup, still Pennsylvania.

We are tenting in a campsite just south of Lickdale, PA. Eagle Eye and I decided to try hitching into town on PA 72, and instead got a ride from these guys we met on the old bridge. We went to Love's Travel Center, where I used the ATM, and then we went to Dairy Queen. It got dark as it got closer to 7pm and we didn't have a ride back yet. Also, it was very windy and cold and black clouds covered the sunset. I got worried and stressed and cold as we hitchhiked in the near dark. Then a girl named Jenna, our trail angel, pulled up and asked where we were headed. She was on her way to bible study and passed us going the opposite direction, but she felt compelled to turn around and come back. Thank goodness!

We had tried to see about getting a room to avoid the looming storm, but there was a car show in town and the hotels were full, not that we could afford a room anyway. We left town and just wanted to get to the campsite that is .6 up the hill. We put on our headlamps and night hiked until we found this spot. There is broken glass near the fire ring so it's obviously a party spot, but empty except for us tonight.

I had dried my tent in the wind at the William Penn Shelter during lunch, so it was ready for tonight. After Jenna dropped us off at the trail head, we hiked and set up camp in the dark and searched for a while in the woods to find a suitable branch to hang our food bags. Just before we went to bed, Eagle Eye realized she had lost her wallet, likely in Jenna's car but possibly on the side of the road or anywhere in the woods around here. Uh oh. Now what?