AT miles hiked today: 11.8
Total AT miles hiked: 102.5
Woo hoo! I have hiked more than 100 miles on the AT, in less than two weeks. Anybody pledging by the hundreds of miles I hike? I think I deserve my zero day (and a half?) in Franklin. Plus I really need supplies. And clean clothes, and a shower (or few), and ice cream, soda, beer, hamburger, all you can eat, FOOD!
I'm waiting for my dehydrated refried beans to hydrate. I carried them this whole way and now they are all that is left for dinner. Obviously they were not a hit. I've also been carrying this healthy protein powder which I've eaten a few times, but I still have a lot left. Guess I might donate that to a hiker box. It's wasted weight to carry food into town. It should all be gone by breakfast tomorrow, and it won't be.
I only have 3.5 miles to hike to the road where the Budget Inn shuttle picks up hotel guests. I will call them tomorrow as soon as I have a signal on my phone. I'll have to check at the top of that hill. Normally I put my phone on airplane mode and to sleep, if not actually turning it off, so as to conserve the battery. Then I check for a signal at camp at night, or rarely, at a break.
The trail today was pretty easy, compared to other days. Albert Mountain was a steep rock scramble and fun, except that I thought I was racing thunderstorms. It never did rain, though it thundered all afternoon. The fire tower on Albert Mountain was so cool and the views were stunning, especially with the clouds everywhere. I climbed the tower, of course, and took pictures with my heavy camera. If I'm going to carry it, I had better use it. The problem is that I have to carry it in my pack, so unless the view is amazing, I don't want to stop, take off my pack and dig it out. Then I have to reload the pack and get it back on and readjusted. It's a big pain.
If I had a lighter weight camera with some manual control-more than a point and shoot-and I could carry it in my pocket or on my waist belt, I would send this one home. But I don't have another option right now, and I will not rely only on my phone for pictures. So, I guess I'll have to manage my food and water weight better.
I am covered in bug bites. Mostly gnats and chiggers, I hope. A couple of the bites on my legs got scratched and one is looking a bit dicey, so I was doctoring myself up earlier. That is part of the reason for the nightly wipe down, to check myself over, check for ticks, and be able to sleep better. I took a picture of myself today and I am red! Maybe I need to use more sunblock. It's strange when you have no idea what you look like and can't smell your own stink anymore.
I like the skirt and I don't. I'm not sure it is great at keeping the bugs off my legs, though I got bit when I clipped it up. I also think the skirt tried to kill me when I climbed Albert Mountain today. I had the sides down to block bugs, so I caught my foot on it. Luckily I didn't fall off the mountain. Maybe it doesn't like me. I'll be looking at some options in town, along with a sun hat and a head net.
Now I've got my compression socks on, Benedryl and Triple Antibiotic where needed, and my feet elevated. My tent is next to a stream and somebody has gone by twice wearing a bear bell, so I assume they are not the bear, but if they want my food, they can have what is left. I don't want it, either.