Day 41 6/8/23
Holiday inn Wytheville
0 miles, mile 545.7
I ended up needing another zero with some stomach problems yet again. I feel much better after another day of rest. Now back to the trail tomorrow for realsies.
Day 42, 6/9/23
Holiday inn to stealth campsite
20.3 miles, mile 566
We have some miles to catch up on after taking 2 zeros! And we only have 4 days of food after today to get us to Pearisburg, at mile 637. I decided to bypass Bland because there is only a dollar general and we could be at a grocery store the other day. Groceries down south sure are expensive, it was $130 for a 5 day measly resupply and then a day of food for when we were at the hotel. I’m feeling pretty tired after a long day today considering I laid in bed and hardly moved or ate the last 2 days. We only saw 5 people on trail today, and saw 6 deer and a lot of cows. There is a pretty big climb to start off the morning tomorrow so I’m glad we stopped where we did. Kevin got a fire going and I collected a lot of wood to keep it going for a bit. It’s always nice to sit by a campfire after hiking all day. There were some comments about bears here so I’m hoping we won’t have a visitor tonight.
Day 43, 6/10/23
Stealth campsite to Laurel creek tent site
19 miles, mile 585
Whew that climb in the morning was no joke, it was 1800 feet up in about 3 miles with a total of 4200 for the day. No bears came last night but a deer did and it was not quiet stomping through the leaves. It came back many times, must have been good leafy greens for it to munch on. Virginia reminds me of Georgia in the way that you go up and down all day long and don’t see a single view! Today we only saw 3 other people during the entire day. Even though kev and I walk in silence most of the time I’m glad he is here because I would certainly be lonely. I’m still having a lot of trouble sleeping which is super frustrating considering it’s been a month and a half. Maybe tonight I’ll be extra tired from not sleeping last night that I’ll actually be able to! Cheers for mile 600 tomorrow.
Day 44, 6/11/23
Laurel creek tent site to stealth camp site
19.7 miles, mile 604.7
I slept through the whole night last night!!! YAY! The most eventful part of today was seeing a deer within the first mile, and 2 bears (a big mama with her baby) within the last 3 miles! I feel kind of bad because they were about 100 yards down to the right from me and I probably didn’t need to yell to scare them off since they were far enough but I did out of instinct and they got spooked. Next time if they’re far enough away minding their own business I won’t yell at them. Today was yet another day of ups and downs with no views. There aren’t many northbound thru hikers in this section of trail but we ran into one guy who said there is a bubble of about 20 of them a day or two ahead. I’m sure we will catch them when we slack pack for 2 days soon and get some bigger miles in. I passed a group of section hikers, a day hiker, and a man all going southbound. Other than that I was on my own today! Kevin was moving at a much faster pace and I hardly saw him all day. There was one other woman going northbound with a running vest on and a hiker tag. She said her husband is supporting her and she is slack packing the entire trail. This means she only carries things she needs for a day hike, and her husband picks her up at the end of the day and she gets a shower and bed in her camper. I am certainly jealous! She started may 21st and has already hiked over 600 miles. It was a good feeling to see the 600 in stones on the side of the trail today. I’m beyond excited for dad to come down on the 14th, I can’t wait for some real food and a bed! I’ve been eating instant mashed potatoes every single night for dinner because the grocery stores don’t carry backpacking meals. I’m getting pretty sick of instant mashed potatoes. Kevin and I got a fire going and it seems it is going to rain tonight which is a bummer because there is nothing worse than packing up a wet tent in the morning. We stopped at a shelter a mile back but it was pretty full and we didn’t want to squeeze in so we hiked another mile up trail to some stealth campsites with a fire ring. As always, I’m hoping for no bears tonight and sleep!
Day 45, 6/12/23
Stealth site to Sugar Run Mountain tent site
18.3 miles, mile 623
We had a change of scenery today for a short while! Dismal falls was 0.6 round trip off trail but we decided to go check it out and it was a pretty cool waterfall with a swimming hole. It was chilly today but it was too beautiful not to go for a quick swim. It certainly was cold but felt very good, especially because I smell horrible. Then we went back into the green tunnel and saw a couple deer and one bear. Our campsite tonight is on top of sugar run mountain and there is a view for once! It’s not spectacular but in comparison to what we have seen since entering Virginia I’ll take it. It rained on us last night and I’m letting my tent dry out now before putting my sleeping pad in and unpacking. After being sick the couple days ago I’m definitely getting my appetite back and Im so hungry. I absolutely cannot wait for dad to get here and to eat real food. Tomorrow morning we are stopping in at Woods Hole Hostel to get another 2 days of food to last us until the end of the 14th. I guess this place is supposed to be pretty cool. If dad weren’t coming so soon we would have hiked there and stayed the night and done laundry and showered. Im hoping it isn’t too windy tonight up here and that my tent stakes stay put! Time to make my mashed potato dinner and get cozy for the night.
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Bridget!!! I’m glad that you’re still out on trail! Miss hiking with you and your brother! Love too see you’re doing well! Sorry about your stomach issues! But now that I know you’re on here too I’ll keep following along! You got this!