More Trail Magic and Ponderings

Day 48

Stealth Site to Spivey Gap 12 miles – AT mile 333.4

Card of the day – Ace of Wands

There was traffic all night but at least it’s not cold!  The traffic however was the least of the sounds.  The symphony of sound camp in the evening were mostly made up of people farting, the tussling of pads, the zips of tents and sleeping bags.  Oh the joys of hiker life.

I woke with dawn but I could not get out of bed today, finally at 7.30, pissssss, the sound of misery, as my air pad deflated and I’m forced to start moving due to the cold hard floor.

I got out by 8.30, which is ok for me, and as predicted, the first hill was awful!  But we made it, and the view was out of this world!  What also felt like it was out of this world was the mountain we were about to climb.  Why mountains, why?

You climb all that way up just to go down and then stairs!  It’s become common knowledge that I’m starting to hate stairs on trail more than I hate cobble stones, and any one that followed my Camino Portuguese on my FB hiking page will know just how much I hate them!

For the second day in a row my soul and spirits were save by trail magic.  Sonya and Grant gave me wine!  Then more wine! And hotdogs! And beer!  And then more wine to take away with me.  Needless to say we all left this amazing trail magic with a big beer induced buzz!  It’s just incredible what people do for the hiking community.  These people never accept donations, but I hope they know that I at least will pay forward their hospitality and kindness.

Finally we set off and the weather had turned.  The forecast had changed from awful to sunny, but apparently the weather had other ideas.  It was lovely speaking to day hikers on the way up to Big Bald.  It was less lovely actually hiking up Big Bald (did I really think there would not be mountains to climb?  Get over it boy!)

At the top it was a tad raining and clouded in so no views, but waking over balds reminds me of home, which is nice.  Home feels like along time ago, I mean it was!

The trail had sections of soft mud, which is usually my favourite surface, this however was intersected with big steps down and roots that want to trip you up.  As has been the case for the last few days it was a killer last mile again.  My feet hurt, my knees hurt.  I just hurt.  Still it’s into town tomorrow, and this has been our longest stretch out yet.

I made it to camp around 4 just as the heavens opened.  Underhill was sat waiting and had scooped the area out for good camping spots.  He, Beam and I got our tents set up in a vain attempt to avoid the worst of the rain and went to sit by the stream, soaking our feet in the frigid water, eating clif bars and drinking what was left of our packed out wine.  Beam and I had both selected chocolate clif bars, like we were in some fancy restaurant, trying to match our food and beverage.  Oh how we laugh at ourselves.

As the rain continued we ate dinner round the fire (Cheeto wanted a lesson in how to start a fire in the rain, but he was too slow and it was lit and well established by the time he came over) and then after hanging my bear bag I hit the tent due to the rain.

It’s odd to just be sat here, 6 of us in tents, having had a fire, in the middle of nowhere, drinking water from the stream, and yet a road just 200 mtrs away that leads to a small town.  What’s most odd is that this is not legal in England, we can’t technically do something like this.  It truly is a blessing.

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