11-2-12

Days since my thruhike began: 198
AT miles hiked today: 7.9
Total AT miles hiked: 1774.2
Miles to complete my thruhike: 410.0

I am staying at the Bears Den Hostel, which is awesome and made of stone and looks like a castle. This is the best hostel yet, and the caretakers are a couple who thruhiked the AT last year. We didn't plan to stay here but the wind was so cold I couldn't stand it. We had said goodbye, again, to Nomad when we left this morning, but after a couple of hours in the warm bunkhouse, we decided to stay rather than return to the cold.

Nomad arrived and said he knew we would stay at Bears Den because of the weather. We did complete the beginning of the "Roller Coaster," which is almost 14 miles of short and steep climbs with no views. It is a notorious section of the AT, but I found it more time consuming than dreadful.

We got a late start again today. We didn't start hiking until 9am. I put my audio book on for the first time in weeks. I knew I needed to distract my mind from the ups coming over and over, followed by downs, and it worked. The trail was a little tricky to find today. If you can't see the trail because it's covered by leaves, you need blazes! Well, I do, anyway.

I met these awesome people here at Bears Den, and saw pictures of other hikers and got my picture taken for the wall. There is a community food cupboard and a full kitchen we can use, plus pancake mix to make pancakes in the morning. We even got Broccoli and leftover tomato soup and salad. I love this place!