Lessons Learned in My First Week
Wow, it’s been a whirlwind first week. Picking a site for your tent and then positioning it may be the first thing you learn. Keep in mind I have never done this before. Once you find a spot you like look for a widow maker. First night I did but was tired and forgot to the second night. So I am sitting and eating when I hear a loud crack and a huge limb falls out of a tree about 27 feet from me. That, my folks, is a widow maker. I looked straight up and thankfully was good. Whew. Lesson learned.
Next up is you want to have your head above your feet, duh, but just as important is the side angle or as you say in golf, the break. So like reading breaks in putts it’s a skill you develop. As in golf you misread the break and instead of missing the putt you constantly slide sideways on your air pad. I missed by two cups last night, so it was just enough to be noticeable but not bad.
This is a good one on me. So the fourth day in I am sitting next to trail eating lunch and a thru-hiker comes by and as we are talking I notice he has the same pack as me and mentioned it. He looks at mine and noticed I have my cinch straps on wrong. The trail seems to have a way of providing.
Woke up one morning and took my morning meds with a big drink of water. About 30 minutes later I realized I had drunk out of my unfiltered water bottle. Luckily I had gotten the water from a spring so no giardia. Whew.
Most hikers eventually acquire a trail name. I don’t have one yet but since I introduce myself by my lifelong nickname, Bux, BevMo suggested it could be my trail name. We will see. I got to give my first trail name two days in. A girl name Alice said she did not want a trail name but she got one that she liked and kept from me. This is how a trail name is made. She was sleeping in the shelter and got up in the middle of the night to go to the privy. Sitting there a bat fell on her back and she screamed, jumped out of the privy not knowing what happen, and opened the door to see what it was when the bat flew by her face. She screamed again. Next day as I am walking I think Bat Girl. I meet a ranger and a trail runner and as I am telling the story she walks up. Upon hearing what I am talking about she says, “You know, I didn’t want a name but I like Bat Girl.” So she became Bat Girl. Cool.
As I am about to finish for the day I round a corner and there it is, trail magic. Former thru-hiker Fresh Ground is set up with free food and drinks. How cool is that. A trail angel. I had hot dogs, nachos, an apple, an orange, and water. For those of you that know me, yes, I am off my diet for the duration of the trail. By the way, the dogs were great. Thanks, Fresh Ground!
60 Miles Done
I am sitting in a hostel, The Trail of Hope, waiting on my resupply that has my meds and writing this blog. Well-known in the hiker community, Junker runs the place. I am a day ahead of my tentative schedule is why I am sitting. Everything good so far.
Next up? Who knows.
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