Day 194 – Mile 1166.7 + 634.3: Hiked down into Pearisburg. Passed Pearis Cliffs (saw Rocket and Rockette) and Angels Rest Rocks. The Plaza Motel for shower, Mexican, nap, Chinese, Angels’ Rest Hostel, met Rabbit (SOBO from last year who was always a week ahead of me), food lion, 😴!
Day 196 – Mile 1166.7 + 643.6: Just a bunch of hikers at a shelter at sunset on Summer Solstice 🌅!
Day 198 – Mile 1166.7 + 662.5: Got up and went to wash my face in the river. Had coffee sitting on the poncho. Wet tent from rain previous night. Stopped at river and put feet in, dried out tent and read my book. Hiked on. Got to road where Mountain Lake was and saw 2 cars. Continued up trail when heard a car pull in. It was couple from New York. Asked them about lake but they didn’t know. 2 guys came out woods and Seadog went up and said “Hey!” The guy said “Hey! Do I know you??” They told us how the lake drained and filled up and is currently drained. We walked on to Wind Rock and set up tent. Guy and girl who worked at Mountain Lake came by and sat on rock. Then Bill and Dotty from Mountain Lake came and sat and we talked. Dotty had a canon 5d. Packed up, made hot chocolate and went to sleep.
Day 199 – Mile 1166.7 + 673.8: Woke up at 6am. Nature Boi was outside tent with a day hiker. Got up and made coffee and ate a honey bun on rock. Radar and her crew came in. Amber and Cara. Then Mr Clean came up with new hiking buddy, GPS. Packed up and hiked out.
Got water at springs and hiked down. Got to War Spur Shelter and got water, napped on picnic table and made coffee. Read log book and saw Newt, Foodie, Stryder, Trek, Violet and Hops in log book from last year. Radar and crew arrived. Hiked on.
Down to creek then up Kelly’s Knob. Trail magic Dasani water at the top of Kelly’s Knob by road (Thanks to whoever put it there – there isn’t much water on this stretch). Continued up and went to watch sunset on rocks on Kelly Knob. Had oatmeal, creamer and cold water and made some phone calls. Packed up and hiked on.
Passed Laurel Creek Shelter and to the House Ruins Campsite. 13 miles to VA 612 tomorrow to The Homeplace for a meal – AYCE (All You Can Eat)!
Day 200 – Mile 1166.7 + 687.0: 13.1 miles to the road to get to homeplace. Woke up at 5:30am, had an oatmeal and coffee and left at 7am. Predicted we’d get to the road by 2pm. Called 4 pines and they said to call when we got to the ridge. Walked through fields. Beautiful early morning dew. Seadog saw a bear. Walked up the ridge and across and then got to ledges and had tortillas and tuna and a nap. No service from ridge. Went down, stopped at shelter and got to road at 3pm. Got a hitch in back of a van to gas station. Joe took us to The Homeplace. Waited an hour. Parkour, Texas dreamer, Baloo. Had fried chicken, beef, beans, biscuit and apple sauce. Got a ride back to Four Pines Hostel. Played Cornhole. Met Honey Bee and Kiltman and Crazy Korean and went to sleep.
Day 204 – Mile 1166.7 + 712.1: “Sleeping Beauty in for some water before iconic McAfee Knob in the rain:) Won’t let the weather dictate my hike:) Thought for the day: When it rains, we say we have “bad” weather. Could it be, that if we started to think of all weather systems as amazing, we would never have another day of “bad” weather? Weather is weather – just different kinds of weather. I’m pretty sure a wet and rainy McAffee Knob is going to be epic – just a different kind of epic to the blue skies, sunshine and sunshine pics we so often see.” – Sleeping Beauty, Trail Log entry at Catawba Shelter 2.7 miles before McAffee Knob.
Update: The foggy, cloudy, rainy McAffee Knob was as beautiful as when the clouds started to open and the views below started to show and hints of blue skies peeped out from above. In fact, had it not been fogged in to start, who knows how much we would have appreciated those beautiful views when it opened.
Over and out kids… 😎🌅🌈☔️