Days 91-94

Day 91 (June 20th) – 19.6 miles to Harper’s Ferry, WV! We are at the traditional half way point of the AT! The ATC (Appalachian Trail Conservancy) takes our picture and puts it in a book for this year. So exciting! Waiting to get picked up by a friend (whom we’ve never met!), who is graciously taking us in for the night. Life is good. Just half more of this bad boy to do!  
Day 92 (June 21st) – 17.8 miles to Dahlgren Backpack Campground. Day started with coffee and a wonderful breakfast by Trish, who picked us up last night and totally pampered and spoiled us (we only knew each other from a FB group!) – Trish & her husband Greg were awesome. Then we started back on trail in search of a peace monument ours friends John & Karen Noltner has left us when they visited the area earlier this year. Unfortunately it was no longer there, so we built our own (at mile 1027.8). Trail was pretty nice today, but lots of rocks. 
Day 93 (June 22nd) – 18.8 miles to Raven Rock Shelter. Pleasant weather, trail magic and good terrain for most of the day, then some big boulders and climbing at end. Rain expected tonight and tomorrow and we have some big boulders to scramble tomorrow, but we only have 5 miles to do to Waynesboro where a B&B awaits us with a jacuzzi tub!!
Day 94 (June 23rd) – 5.0 miles to Waynesboro, PA. We passed the Mason-Dixon Line and are now in Pennsylvania! 6 states down, just 8 more to go! We are at a fabulous place called Burgandy Lane B&B, can’t wait to use the jacuzzi tub later!!
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Days 82-90

Day 82 (June 11th) – 20.7 miles to Blackrock Hut (our biggest day yet)! Saw our first bear today! It was a cub and about 30 yards away and ran away from us. It was a hot day, 85 and sunny. We ran into friends we made our first week out here, but hadn’t seen since the first 100 miles – Many Miles and Giggles (and her dad, visiting from England this week). Good day, hard day. No water the last 13 or so miles and we were completely out by the time we got here tonight (but knew there was water here – and it is delicious! Cold and right out of a spring!). 
Day 83 (June 12th) – 21.4 miles to Hightop Hut – our biggest day yet. We hit the 900 mile mark today! We saw a deer and a rattle snake and ate at our first Wayside in the Shenandoah National Park. It was a long, hard day. Very hot out and buggy (gnats hovering in front of our faces). Everyday has its challenges out here. 

Day 84 (June 13th) – 11.6 miles to Lewis Mountain Campground. Listening to our bodies and took it a bit easy today. Still hard day – lots of uphill in hot and humid weather. Campground is for “normal” people, so has a little store, coin showers and laundry. Not much else to report. The heat and bugs are making this hard, along with many few other ailments… 
Day 85 (June 14th) – 16.7+ miles to somewhere past Skyland Resort where we are currently having a drink and burger/wings. Much better day today! My feet and knee is feeling better, weather was cooler (thundered all day but no rain yet) and terrain was pretty nice until about 3 miles ago (rocks/climbing). Will stealth camp somewhere just past here. 

Day 86 (June 15th) – 18.4 miles to just past Elkwallow Wayside. Cool weather, rain held off all day except for a little sprinkling. Got to the last Wayside of the Shenandoah’s before it closed tonight, we’ll be out of the park tomorrow. Saw a deer and two small grey snakes today, deer was very tame. Stealth camping tonight.
Day 87 (June 16th) – 19.3 miles in the rain. Miserable day. Hiking 19 miles alone is hard, but add a constant rain? No fun. 

On the positive side… I got nothing. Maybe tomorrow. 
Greg called today his worst day yet. 

Day 88 (June 17th) – 0 miles / zero day in Front Royal. Rested, relaxed, ate, bathed.  

Day 89 (June 18th) – 20.8 miles to just past Ashby Gap. No rain but humidity was sweltering. Greg got heat rash again, may be a reoccurring thing. We got trail magic today!! Hadn’t seen for a long time, and was a very welcome sight on this sweaty day! Saw two large rat snakes. 

Day 90 (June 19th) – 12.7 miles to just past Bear’s Den Rocks. Big day today – passed the 1,000 mile marker! Did most of the Roller Coaster – a 13.5 mile section of severe ups and downs. The Roller Coaster is hard! Especially in this humid weather. We just barely threw our tent down when it started pouring out. Day ended early, but we are not hiking in the rain. Tomorrow we’ll hike into Harper’s Ferry, the symbolic half-way point, where we are meeting a friend-turned trail angel!
For pictures or videos, search for “Appalachian Trail Tales” on Facebook and YouTube. 

Days 72-81

72 (June 1st) – 0 (zero day). 

Day 73 (June 2nd) – 16.4 miles. We hit the 1/3 way mark today, hard to believe we are 1/3 of the way done! We saw a deer right next to the trail today, and she was not shy at all. We are next to the BRP (Blue Ridge Parkway) that the AT crisscrosses for the next 100 miles, it’s really beautiful here. We found a perfect stealth site just past Harvey’s Knob Lookout. My knee was hurting today, but I’m sure it’ll be better tomorrow. 
Day 74 (June 3) – 16.2 miles. Beautiful weather and not bad terrain. Saw a black snake and several lizards. Passed nice swimming hole (with cold water) and got an ice cold Mountain Dew from Grateful! Saw lots of new (to us) hikers today, we might be in a new bubble. Knee was better by this afternoon (went slower on downhills today), hoping that keeps up!

Day 75 (June 4) – 16.5 miles. Sunny and hot day. Very humid. All uphill today, with some rocks and boulders (total ascent of 4,881 ft!). Saw 3 deer who aren’t afraid of us at all. Saw and survived The Guillotine!!

Day 76 (June 5) – 7.7 miles to Glasgow, VA – Stanimal’s Hostel. Miserable day. Was raining last night and all day today – including when we took the tent down this morning (we tried to wait for a lull, didn’t happen). I (Chica) have decided that I really don’t like hiking in the pouring rain. Bright spots: the terrain was pretty decent (well, except for the huge mud and puddles we had to walk through), we hiked fast (3 mi/hr), we met Subway (Hiker from NY, retired cop), we had a Nero (short hike) day, and are now at a Hostel taking care of business (it’s easy to think of the positives after getting out of the rain and having a hot shower!). This is a great Hostel, they have lots of food and drinks you can buy – all on the honor system, check out the candy selection!

Day 77 (June 6) – 20.0 miles to Brown Mountain Creek Shelter. Hiked most of the day with Subway, beautiful weather with a cool breeze. Passed the 800 mile mark! Saw a snake – Sunsets thinks it’s a Hog Nose Snake (I was in front and this time saw it in time to not step on it!). When Sunsets prodded it to move, it puffed up and hissed at him, we waited as we couldn’t go around (steep decline on one side and very thick underbrush and steep uphill on other side), and finally it slithered off across the trail. 

Day 78 (June 7) – 18.5 miles to Spy Rock Campsite. Very chilly all day, and very cold now at night. Good day hiking! Ran into Subway again and hiked most of the day with him. Tomorrow hiking 19.4 miles to Reed’s Gap and hopefully getting a hitch or ride in to Devil’s Backbone Brewpub, which several people have recommended. They let you tent for free, so that is our plan – eat dinner, tent, have breakfast next morning and head back to the trail. 

Day 79 (June 8) – 19.4 miles to Reed Gap. Killer day – all rocks, boulders, uphill or downhill. Thought this day would never end!! But we made it! I stuck out my thumb for a hitch and we got picked up right away, dropped off at Devil’s Brewpub where we are now dining (it’s a real restaurant!). They let us tent here for free, have ‘a $5 breakfast and will take us back to the trail in the morning. What a great place!!

Day 80 (June 9) – 14.1 miles, Reeds Gap to Paul C. Wolfe Shelter. Started with great breakfast at the Brewpub, then a shuttle back to the trail, so didn’t start hiking till 10:30. Check out my video (when posted) for Devil’s Pub – can’t say enough great things! More boulders today, but definitely easier than yesterday, thankfully! Great weather too. People all around us saw a bear today, and we were looking closely, but did not see. 
Day 81 (June 10th) – 5.0 miles to Rockfish Gap, then to Stanimal’s Hostel in Waynesboro. Nice easy hike today, and enjoying our Nero so far. Chic-fil-A for lunch (oh so good!), showers (oh that feeling of getting clean!) and packages to open!!! Stanimal (thru-hiked in ’04) has a nice Hostel here and the town of Waynesboro has everything you need!

Days 65-71

Day 65 (May 25th) – O miles, Zero day, Pearisburg, VA. Greg got some kind of food poisoning (we think from Mexican restaurant yesterday) and was up all night. Feeling better today but rested all day. Glad we are taking zero today! Hopefully he will be back to normal tomorrow. 
Day 66 (May 26th) – 14.9 miles Pearisburg to campsite. Happy Birthday to Chica! Greg still not feeling perfect. Day was cool and windy, bit of sun. Rain forecasted for tomorrow and Sunday, trying to keep our spirits up. 

Day 67 (May 27th) – 14.6 miles to stealth camp site. Today was a hard day, mainly because of the terrain – rocks and boulders and stream crossings and mud. Rain held off all day which was nice. 

Day 68 (May 28th) – 15.8 miles to Sarver Hollow Shelter. Saw the 2nd to biggest tree on the AT today (300 yrs old, 18′ around) and got two trail magics! Saw three deer today! Another hard day, but we dodged the rain again.

Day 69 (May 29th) – 16.1 miles to Pickle Branch Shelter. Saw a baby rattle snake today, I stepped over it and didn’t even see it. Got trail magic and met Grateful and his family. It was a good day! 

Day 70 (May 30th) – 16.0 miles to Pig Farm Campsite. What a day! Most exhausting and most rewarding. We hit 700 miles today! Dragon’s Tooth area was the hardest rock climbing we’ve done. McAfee Knob was so awesome to see finally in person! We are exhausted and hurting but happy. 

Day 71 (May 31st) – 15.5 miles to Daleville, VA. The trail was so much nicer today, which we really needed after yesterday. Hiked with Single T all day and got to Daleville just as it started raining. Shower, eating, celebrating Chica’s birthday, and laundry are on the agenda. Zero today tomorrow. 

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