Day 84 – Marathon Week, Day #1

Marathon week got off to a pretty good start all things considered. Hoping to continue the momentum into day 2 if my body cooperates. I started the day still a good distance behind Rabbit.

Chase Rabbit Tracker: 79 miles

I’m not sure if it’s an omen or coincidence but I’ve seen more Rabbits on the trail in the last couple days than the whole AT combined so far. He must be sending his minions to come check on me (what a sweetheart).

I woke around 6 something and got on the trail before 7:30. It was another all solo day today. Early to bed the night prior had the best of intentions however I tossed and turned much of the night. I stopped at a wayside 5 miles in for a quick snack and was back on the trail. The morning was fueled by caffeine and listening to music.

Song of the Day: Bachman-Turner Overdrive “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet”

Notable as one of the first main stream singers with a stutter (I made that up, but you’ll never be able to listen to the song the same way again).

I came up just short of getting in 12 miles before 12 noon. More snack and privy breaks were taken at Gravel Springs Hut. The second half of the day did not quite go as easily.

For one, my Achilles started to rear its head. I neglected to get the Superfeet insoles I got with my previous pair of Altras. That will likely prove to be a mistake (one I’m hoping to remedy quickly). Additionally, there was some groin chaffage that I pushed through for better or for worse. It was either a result of walking soaking wet in the rain yesterday or the liner in the new shorts I got. I cut the liner out tonight and I’m hoping (praying) it’s a non-issue tomorrow. I’ve had zero chaffing issues until this point.

It was another hot and humid day. I drank a ton of water and luckily there were not too many long hauls on the trail between water sources. There was another rain shower this afternoon. This one, I’m happy to say I managed better.

I waited out the storm for roughly 20 minutes under a particularly thick tree-covered area. I escaped the rain mostly unscathed this time. Fool me once, shame on you, Fool me twice, you can’t get fooled again (mission accomplished). Tomorrow there is no rain in the forecast although it’s expected to be another hot one.

I encountered some trail magic leaving the Shenandoahs today. Also encountered were a mama bear and 2 cubs (they’re still not real, btw. Just more government plants).

The end of the day was uphill to Mosby campsite. I arrived just after dark and managed to get water and my tent up just before more evening rain showers started. I made 27.6 miles today stopping at mile marker 975.5. Rabbit ended his day at mile 1043.6 so we gained another 11 miles.

Chase Rabbit Tracker: 68.1 miles

One nice thing about marathon week is that every day is one full percentage point closer to Maine. Presently I’m 44.4% of the way to Katahdin. By the end of the week I’ll be over 1/2 way there!

So far I’m enjoying the challenge. It makes the solitude pass a little easier having a goal to shoot for. Looking forward to another day of chasing the Rabbit tomorrow. And perhaps a shower or a dip in a stream. I smell really bad right now.

Stow away in my pack for day 85 of the Appalachian Trail.


(Marathon week will coincide with a week of dedication’s to mentors)

Paradise HS Football/Basketball/Track Coaches

There’s so many to name and I’ll try my best: Rick Prinz, Eric King, Nino Pinocchio, Andy Hopper, Bob Smalley, Paul Orlando, Kirt Woodman, Sonny Johnstone, Dale Leick (RIP), Coach Jimmy and a bunch more. Thank you for always pushing me to do my best and settling for nothing less than perfection. I owe my discipline and hard work in large part to the drive you’ve instilled in me and countless other young men and women. I’m a better person today for having had the opportunity to play under your tutelage. Thank you!

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Comments 2

  • thetentman : Jul 9th

    Rabbit hunting. Good luck Elmer.

    Love the pics.

  • Otter : Jul 9th

    Hike your own hike, but make sure you don’t run yourself off the Trail

    And Happy Trails always!



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