11-21-12

Days since my thruhike began: 217
AT miles hiked today: 11.5
Total AT miles hiked: 1953.3
Miles to complete my thruhike: 230.9

We are tenting at Spy Rock campsite. It's a dry camp with no water but it was dark and windy when we got here, and my right knee has suddenly become quite painful. It ached last night, but today coming up the Priest I slipped on dry leaves on top of a rock and pulled something in my knee. By the end of the day I thought maybe it would collapse under me and I was nearly crying with the pain. I'm scared. How can I hike like this?

The thermometer says it is 37 degrees but feels colder in the wind. I threw a bear bag tonight for the first time in a long while. The Priest was long and steep and hard, but if I hadn't slipped and hurt my knee I didn't think it was that bad.

I think I've done too much uphill lately with too much weight on my back and that makes it worse. But, hey, I'm almost done! My knee will cooperate. It has to. We got a cold view from a rock overlook on the way up The Priest before lunch and water from a cold pool of a spring at The Priest Shelter. My whole body was shaking and my hands were numb with cold after getting water. I almost wished for some hills to climb just so I could warm up, but my knee hurts the worst on the uphills. At least the sun was shining.

Just before dark we heard a gunshot right next to us on the mountain and we both freaked out. It was so close and loud, it sounded like a cannon. Yikes.