Saturday, July 31, 2010

Day 12: The Doyle - Duncannon, PA

11.4 mi

We just had to get over the hump to get to Duncannon but it felt like the most difficult section to date. Not only are we seriously feeling the effects of two long days back to back, but we are starting to encounter more rocky sections. We got off to a later start than usual and seemed to hike slower and slower as the hours passed. We finally made it to the Doyle Hotel and will be zeroing here to try to heal up and recover a bit.

We stopped at the Quick Mart and enjoyed a nice cold drink and ice cream. We then got our shower and laundry today finally after way to long. The salt was starting to build up bad enough that I could feel the crystal buildup. It felt really good to shower. The dirt buildup wasn't too bad but bad enough. We will be in a real bed tonight and although there is no AC, we will have a ceiling and floor fan. The Doyle is almost as I remember it. I do hope the renovations the book talks about happens because this place has lots of character. It is one of the original Anheuser-Busch buildings and is over 100 years old.


Friday, July 30, 2010

Day 11: Darlington Shelter

19 mi

Today was a very long day. we really should have stopped in Boiling Springs but at the time we felt fine so we pressed on. 14 mi of flat farm land. How hard could it be? Well it was quite hot and humid plus we were already tired from yesterday's 20 mi. So needless to say, we pulled into the shelter quite tired, with fresh blisters, and after a long day. But we did pass our 100 mi mark today, 2 mi out of Boiling Springs.

My feet are a mess in spite of my knees doing so well. It seems like this trip will be all about trying to find the right footwear rather then saving my knees. I hope we can sort it out. I may just have to go back to my Keen sandals.

WE didn't make it to the shelter in time to beat the thunderstorm. We were about 2 mi away when the dark clouds opened up and soaked us. We hurried on to the shelter soaked and miserable from the long day.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Day 10: Alec Kennedy Shelter

20 mi

The trail gives hope in one mile and dashes it in the next. Today was an eventful day. We moved on early not entirely sure where we would stay the night. We were hoping for a shower at the campground. We first stopped at Pine Grove Furnace State Park, home of the half gallon challenge. Not having enough of an appetite to eat half a gallon nor had we completed half the trail, we merely got a cone. We managed to bust out the miles to the next shelter (10.1 mi) and felt good enough to press on. At the campground, we were sadly disappointed that the laundry was not working so we pressed on. We passed the next campground as we were making such good time we thought we could make Alec Kennedy shelter. As we came down the trail, we had some trail magic, a cooler with Pepsi and Mountain Dew. We took a break before pressing onto a very rocky section. We slowed down to a nothing pace but managed to make our miles just barely before running out of water. We had a long day but made great progress. Feet are sore but my cold seems to be on the mend. I might have incurred another blister. Tomorrow we will see how badly off we really are. We will make Boiling Springs tomorrow.


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Day 9: Tom's Run Shelter

13.6 mi

We got a great start in this morning hitting the trail by 7:15. We made it to the next shelter by about 10ish. Birch Run Shelter is very nice and we had an early lunch before moving on. We busted out the next 3 mi in one hour but the last 3 mi went a little slower. It was a good day with no rain. It did get quite warm (humid) at midday. We rolled in somewhat early which was nice so we could rest. It was good to finally feel good enough to finally hike some real distance today. I'm not 100% well but I feel like I am on the mend.

It was a somewhat uneventful day. We are slowly gathering a group around us of other flip-floppers and section hikers. The shelter here is nice as is the stream. It was nice to wash up a little and I also rinsed out some of my clothes which was nice. I no longer have grit on my face. I wish I could have washed up more but this little bird bath was still nice and refreshing. I feel like I washed some of the sickness away. My feet are still tender but they are also on the mend as well.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Day 8: Quarry Gap Shelters

5.7 mi

One week since we started hiking. I am still achy plus I am still sick. We ended up doing a low mile day due more to my cold but the rain was no help either. It started off overcast, then turned to light rain. It has been raining more or less all day. We got an early start and rolled into the shelter around 10:30 but I wasn't really in any condition to move on. I ended up getting more sleep. If not for the damp cold humidity, I'd say I was feeling better. Rather, I feel cold and wet. The cough seems to be on the decline though.

We over planned our resupply but not sure we have enough to make it to Boiling Springs. I'm not sure either of us could have carried more food though. We will just have to plan more carefully. We are definitely not moving very fast due to my cold. I think we would have been moving slow with sore feet but at least we would be able to move forward rather than when the cold stops us.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Day 7: Rocky Mountain Shelter

10.2 mi

Forward progress is being made but my feet are still pretty badly blistered (although they have popped). My lungs are still not well. I cough but not always with satisfactory results. I get winded quite easily as a result. I can't quite tell if the cold is getting better or staying the same. We took a while to hike the 10 mi today because of all this. In spite of the slowness, we got to the shelter at 3:30 after leaving at about 8:00. We had lunch over at Chimney Rocks. It was nice if a little out of the way. The trail was poorly marked and had a downed tree but getting a view was nice. Pass a blueberry patch, yummm.

I took a one hour nap once we hit the shelter. Hopefully this will help me heal up and get better. I seem to be sleeping a lot, likely my body trying to recover from this cold.

We had a nice cool breeze part of the day. Plus the weather finally cooled off a little. We stopped at Tumbling Run Shelters (snoring and non-snoring shelters) to discover someone had left a fire going. My husband put the fire out before we moved on. We couldn't believe people could be so unaware and negligent as to leave a fire going, especially with a river nearby, water certainly wasn't an issue. If they couldn't put it out, they shouldn't have started it.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Day 6: Deerlick Shelter

12 miles

Finally on the move again. We made the 10 miles into Pen Mar park crossing into Pennsylvania. We had to resupply and went into Waynesboro. It was a good resupply both for the food and footwear. There was an Olympic Sports and I managed to find a pair of shoes that fit. So out with the old blister forming shoes. We managed to get a lift both out and back. 2 more miles done very slowly and we are at our next stopping point. My feet are still pretty blistered up and my lungs are not liking the exertion yet. But I am at least on the mend.

I feel a little bad that we are not moving quickly and I am not really pulling my weight but hopefully I will heal up quickly. At least my knees have not been a problem as far as I can tell. No pain or even any tweaking. I sometimes get an ache but nothing like I normally get. I have been doing my lifts 2x a day, 10 in the morning and 15 in the evening.

On a good note, the Peek has been pretty handy and we've had reception most nights. The weather feature should be quite useful as we travel too.


Day 5: Ensign Cowall Shelter (zero day)

0 miles.

Today was a bit of an enforced zero day due to my cold. It does seem to be breaking up so I am hopeful we can make some miles tomorrow. My husband went back to Smithsburg to pickup a few more things in case we don't make Waynesboro tomorrow. I managed to get sleep today hopefully helping with healing both the cold, lungs and muscles as well as blistered feet. It was a boring bay especially so soon into our trip. I feel bad but going on would have made things worse. We should be able to get an early start tomorrow. It is only 10 miles to Waynesboro. The terrain seems a bit more rugged than what we've seen so far. Still pretty flat though. We duct taped up my feet tonight hoping to give the tape a chance to stick to my dry feet. The weather also seems to have broken. We had some off and on rain, then lots of high wind, now there is less humidity and it feels cooler. So hopefully some good hiking weather and sleeping weather. Looks like we are on our own tonight at the shelter.


Day 4: Ensign Cowall Shelter

6.6 miles

Didn't go far today in spite of the flat terrain. My blisters went from not good to bad. My sore throat also upgraded to a cold with very sore throat with runny nose and slight headache. My husband had to run into Smithsburg for cold remedy's. I'm not that happy about the forced stop, neither is my husband (and I can't blame him). We were doing fairly well at least mileagewise. Bodywise my knees are still good but I do have some muscle aches. Some of which likely due to the blisters. Although it would be nice to move along tomorrow, it is likely best to rest and try to recoup before moving on. There is also about a 90% chance of rain so holing up is not a bad idea (especially with a cold). We should be able to get to Waynesboro in a couple of days and hopefully track down better (newer) footwear. Its raining now, I'm glad we at least made it to the shelter even if it is close to the road. Not sure if we will stay here or go to the hostel nearby tomorrow. Depends on how I am feeling.