400 and counting
2 June 2017
AT – 410.4 miles
Today’s – 16.7 miles
Time – 9.5 hrs
Speed – 1.75 mph
As always, the hostel’s timeline is not my timeline. When I told him an 8am start time, I meant…8am go directly to the trail. NOT…let’s stop at the bakery for breakfast.
BUT…the breakfast sandwich was awesome! Egg, provolone cheese, ham and dried tomatoe pesto on sour dough toast — that will stick to the ribs!
So another late start for me! I finally made it to the trail by 9am…way too late for big miles. However, today’s trail was somewhat level and nice so I hoped the late start wouldn’t impact me too much.
AND I was right! It wasn’t the late start nor trail, but instead a painful left shin issue quickly manifesting into a I don’t think I can continue walking anymore today kind of left shin pain.
You see, yesterday climbing Little Hump Mtn and HUMP Mtn, I started to get a little shin pain. Then coming down into Roan Mtn TN it persisted…but I had no worries. I’ve gotten weird unexplained pain before and it usually goes away.
This morning when I woke up, I noticed a slight stress in the shin area, but I thought it would work itself out over the first few morning miles. So I took it real easy…but the pain got worse.
Finally, during lunch at Jones Falls…
I noticed my I had cankles on my left leg. I took off my Zensha compression sleeve to realize “Houston, we have a problem…”
It was painful walking up, down and on flat surfaces. Not good when you’re 8 miles the way you came from help and 30 miles in the other direction. So, I decided a few Rx might do the trick, ate some lunch and was on my not so merry way. The pain killers helped for 20 minutes…but not like no pain, pain killers. I was still feeling it!
Then I came across a cold stream and decided a nice cold soak might help. NOPE, that was a nogo. It did relieve some of the swelling, but I was still having issues.
After making it to the Mountaineer Shelter, I took about an hour of elevating the leg. It seemed to help, but soon after starting to hike again the swelling and pain returned.
I finally limped into a campsite about 2 miles before the next shelter to get some rest for the leg. I’m hoping a little elevation and sleep will help get me to Hampton TN tomorrow which is 14.9 miles away to Lake Watagua OR 10.8 miles to the town cutoff trail + a few miles — guess which one I plan to take? (The shortest path)
The BIG accomplishment today was passing the 400 mile mark!
I hope the body can keep closing the book on these monumental mile markers.
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Yeah for 400 but NOT the painful leg.