Taco hates his trail name, and my birthday is coming up!
Okay, before I get started, I’m just going to state that I am not good at keeping my journal up to date, so I will only be writing about recent happenings.
Without further ado, let’s talk about Pennsylvania to New Jersey/New York.
As I write this, my inexplicably wonderful boyfriend, Dave (trail name Taco), and I are sitting easy at a bed and breakfast in Warwick, New York. Hiking in rain for two days left our clothing saturated, our bodies sleepy, and our tent less than pleasurable to sleep in. I highly recommend the Sleepy Valley Inn For any hiker looking for a private room and a whirlpool bathtub.
So how was Pennsylvania? Initially I loved it. I have been sporting a newer, lighter pack (Granite Gear VC 60 ki) which is making everything more comfortable. Upon getting in to Boiling Springs, my pack weighed a whopping 22 lbs. No complaints! Dave and I were out of the bubbles at that point, so the majority of our days we’re spent just together, until we met SUPREME Taco, Cauliflower, And Clay. We haven’t seen them since boiling springs, but they were such a nomadic trio I had to mention them. Before leaving Boiling Springs, I got a smoothie from Cafe 101 and fed a duck right out of my hand. Having the opportunity to experience something so awesome, to have a wild creature trust me so greatly, is something I will cherish forever. Seriously guys, it was SO incredible.
A certain trail celebrity, Bismark, once told Dave and me that there is a rocky stretch in PA from Duncannon to the Delaware Water Gap. Growing up in PA and having hiked most of it in either day hikes or just 20 miles sections, I assumed he was just kidding. Not only is PA the rockiest place I’ve ever hiked, but it left my ego (and my knees) bruised. I fell more times than I can tell you, and when the cuts on my knees, and one puncture wound (thanks Port Clinton) started to heal, the rock scramble up Palmerton shouted “fuck you” to me and took the scabs clear off my knees. Like I’ve said in previous posts, Dave is an amazing hiking partner, and was undeniably calm throughout my stint of clumsiness and simply suggested I start using my trekking poles again. Who would have thought that trekking poles also aid in stability?
In all seriousness though, the day leaving Palmerton was the only bad day I’ve had in a LONG time. However, it ended with us hiking to Wind Gap, where we got picked up by Dave’s mom, and took our good friend Werewolf home with us for the evening. The three of us intended on slack packing the following day in to the water gap, but upon waking up we realized that our feet were far too sore and food sounded way better. So I spent that day visiting my best friend, Carrie, and we watched THE SEASON 6 FINALE OF THE VAMPIRE DIARIES. I know it’s tempting, but please don’t judge. It was a seriously awesome zero day. The following day, Dave, Werewolf, and I slack packed in to the Water Gap, then the three of us went and got pizza with our friends at our favorite pizza spot.
Note: Dave and I live in the are of the Delaware Water Gap, so that’s how we were able to do all of this. Sorry for any confusion!
Before I go on, I wanted to back track and mention an amazing couple we stayed with in Duncannon. Now, they asked to not be published so I won’t name them, but their generosity was unbelievable. They fed us hot dogs, sausages, beer, and super fine Nicaraguan rum. They were so cool, and really love the trail.
Okay, so since leaving PA not much has happened. I can’t feel the bottoms of my toes from rocky rocky Pennsylvania, and have one recurring blister, but I’m refusing to get new boots because they are in perfectly fine shape. Maybe my trail name should’ve been “Stubborn” or “Bullheaded” instead of Snickers. We’re trying our darnedest to be in Vermont by June 19….. Why? Well, because I’m turning 24!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And I really want to celebrate my birthday in Vermont. We’ll see how it goes, I have faith.
I hope that all of you out on the trail are having the time of your life. This trail has changed me so much, and I suspect by the time I reach Katahdin, it will have changed me even more. I’m more patient, and I don’t kill bugs anymore. I have always loved nature, but being so close to it all the time has left me with a profound respect for all life. It’s an incredible thing.
And my birthday is officially in 16 days! 🙂
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Happy early birthday!!!
Awesome to hear of your journey so far! Luckily your bruised legs should get a break for awhile in the mid-Atlantic. I noticed you mentioned not killing bugs and having a new respect for all life but you also said you had hot dogs and sausages. Have you ever considered going vegan to align your values?