Hogback Ridge Shelter

AT miles hiked today: 14.7
Total AT miles hiked: 315

I met trail angels Janet and Yonder, who thruhiked in 2007. Today they came out hiking with hotdogs and sodas for us, carried in coolers and warmers on their backs. There were chicken, beef and veggie hotdogs, ketchup, mustard and relish, and a selection of cold drinks. I had a coke and a chicken hot dog. That was the coolest thing and really my first trail magic that was specifically for thruhikers. I came around a bend and there they were, talking to Eagle Eye and feeding her right in the middle of the trail and then they fed me and told us to drop our trash off in their truck bed at the gap. Thanks you guys! You have inspired me for my hike and beyond.

This morning an owl flew out of the bushes right in front of me. It was so cool! Then Big Butt Mountain (I looked for a sign for a picture but never saw one-sorry) was beautiful in the rising sun, though the tall, dewey grass got my shoes and socks wet. I met a 2010 thruhiker up there called Someday, hiking with Hillbilly Bart and a dog. She was making up a section she had missed and said going Southbound was great. Between the heat yesterday and her comments today, I have pretty much decided to flip flop my hike.

I was wrong about seeing Houdini again. He was still at his campsite this morning when I passed. Jaybird's dad has been hiking this section and Ewok was with them. At least this is what I understood. I might be wrong. Anyway, they were going at his Dad's pace and Houdini was hanging out with them. So we leapfrogged all day with them and Phoenix, who used to be called Scotty and had his food stolen by a bear a couple of nights ago. I also met Possum and saw Too Tall again. Nice Lady was ahead of me after the first break at the next shelter, and I was close to Rockin Robin and Eagle Eyes until the end. Eagle Eyes stopped before this shelter and camped at this awesome lookout spot a couple miles back. I met Laundry Matt at this shelter and some of us played cards tonight for my first time on the trail.