Days 75-76

Day 75, 7/12/23

James Fry Shelter to Darlington Shelter

26.3 miles, mile 1,138.6

Today was a long day, we started hiking around 8:00 a.m. and got to the shelter around 7:30 p.m. It was a good day though, we went swimming twice in rivers and got some ice cream in Boiling Springs. We saw some deer, bunnies, a snake, cows, and a lot of busy roads. There was some decent elevation in the morning and at the end, but the middle of today was entirely flat. The majority of the flat was through corn fields. I did get a little bored, but got some music going to keep me moving. We came across a farm stand that had a cooler with Gatorade and two little Amish children came up on their bikes so we could buy them. When we got to the shelter we had dinner with our new friends Kicks, Tadpole, and All Star, and then our older friend Deadbeat who we hadn’t seen in a while. Tadpole is Kicks uncle and All Star has been tagging along with them since NC. They started a week after us and are doing really high mileage, so I have a feeling they will creep ahead of us sometime soon. It turns out both All Star and Kicks have engineering degrees too! I’m excited for a short day tomorrow into town.

Day 76, 7/13/23

Darlington Shelter to Kind of Outdoorsy Hostel

10.8 miles, mile 1,149.4

I didn’t start packing up until around 8:15 a.m. I knew we had a short day and I didn’t want to get up. The hiking down into town was steep and rocky and we got here around 1:30 p.m. We stopped at the 7 eleven in town for a slushy and Gatorade before proceeding to the hostel. It is a hot box in here with no AC, which is a bummer, but I took a super cold shower and had some ice cream. The ice cream was much larger than I anticipated. I guess since I didn’t do the half-gallon challenge this was my payback. The hostel doesn’t have laundry, so I walked down the street to a laundromat. When I came back, I noticed that the hostel does Darn Tough sock exchanges, so I exchanged both pairs of my socks for brand new ones for free! It’s so amazing that they do that. I planned out our next eight days roughly because Ethan and Mom are driving down and needed to know the area we would be in to get a place rented. After I got that figured out, we hung out with Kicks, Tadpole, and All Star for a bit and they are trying to convince Kev and I to hike 29 miles tomorrow. I highly doubt I will be able to do that, but I will give it an effort. It all depends on if I sleep tonight in the heat!

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