Harpers Ferry to Delaware Water Gap

On May 31 I finally made it to Harpers Ferry and the ATC. I started Springer Mountain with hiker number 478. When I checked into the ATC I was hiker number 458. I was speaking with the folks at the ATC and found out that normally the dropout rate is about 50 percent by this point. This year, however, they have had over 70 percent drop out, mostly due to the early weather in the Smokies. I thought this was a very nice accomplishment.

New Pack, Woohoo!

My Sierra Designs pack has started to not fit not quite right due to weight loss. I spend each day readjusting multiple times. I called REI and ordered a new pack. I ordered an Osprey Atmos 50. Although the pack is a pound heavier, I know that it is more comfortable and will fit me better. I had it sent to Palmerton so I was looking forward to getting there.

I got to Duncannon and maybe against my better judgment I stayed at the very, sad but historic Doyle Hotel. The food was fantastic, as was the cold beer.

The next day I left Duncannon, and the climb out was certainly a steep one. At one of the viewpoints I stopped to take a panoramic picture. I stepped off the trail a little bit, only to be about three feet away from a very large rattlesnake. This certainly made me take a few steps back.

Port Clinton, a Very Small Town

I arrived in Port Clinton and the Port Clinton Hotel. The hotel is a notch or two above The Doyle, but again the food is excellent. When I got into town I was going to pick up my resupply box but found the post office to be closed. No worries, I thought; I will stay the night and pick it up in the morning. This is when I found out the post office, which is in the basement of a duplex home, does not open until 12:30 p.m. I decided I would just leave in the morning and have the box bounced forward to Palmerton, where my next package was to be delivered.

Palmerton, In and Out

I was able to catch an easy hitch into Palmerton and got my backpack exchanged. And got my other resupply package. I got rid of some items I didn’t need by sending them home. I then went across the street to a local hot dog and ice cream place where I ate two very good dogs, and a dish of rainbow sherbet. After finishing I hit up Uber for a ride back to the trail. I was able to make it to one of the few tent sites along the way. And would get to Delaware Water Gap the next day.

Rest at DWG

I made it into town and decided to stay at the Church of the Mountain Hiker Center, a local church that allows hikers to stay in a bunk room in the basement. Or in the small pavilion beside the church. I chose to stay in the park with my hammock. A good choice for me. As I write this I am sitting in the park while there is a small jazz and blues concert with a local performing duo. It’s a very lazy and chill evening. There was even a very nice lady that heard my story and bought me a couple of hot dogs and a drink to enjoy.

Tomorrow will be New Jersey. I am looking forward to the delis and later the NY pizza.

Rick James NOBO 2018



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