Troutville to Glasgow And Beyond: The Adventure Continues

One-Third Mile Marker

After a delicious breakfast of French toast, an egg, and cheesy potatoes, I left Beech Hill Hostel. In no time at all, I reached the 1/3 mile marker, shown below. I experienced a tremendous sense of accomplishment!

The hiking that day was relatively easy with only moderate elevation changes. I found blueberries ripe enough to eat. To my dismay, however, at Black Horse Gap, the trail began to parallel the Blue Ridge Parkway. The trail also crossed the parkway several times at viewpoints. The only positive for me was that there were trash cans at some of the parking areas. For Mooch, the positive was getting pizza delivered!

That night I slept at a tentsite close enough to the Parkway to hear cars. Thankfully there were none out on the road at night. (The trail continued to parallel and/or cross the Parkway until Bearwallow Gap, which I reached the next day). Mooch, Chico, and Baffles passed my tentsite and stayed at the shelter a few miles further north.

Baffles had told me she was going to the Middle Creek Campground for a burger and milkshake the next day. She said the staff provide a shuttle to and from the campground. What an interesting idea! I could fit the stopover into my plan to hike to Bryant Ridge Shelter.

When I got down to Jennings Creek, there wasn’t cell service to call for a shuttle to the campground. Fire, a hiker I met a couple of weeks ago, described the 2-mile route, and I started walking. About halfway there, I got a ride.

There were many hikers already at the campground, most of whom were going to spend the night. I ate a cheese quesadilla and drank a peach milkshake, and then went for a short swim in the pond. The food was filling, and the swim was so refreshing!

Baffles and I got a shuttle back to the trailhead together. She soon passed me and planned to hike further than me.  A few tenths of a mile before the Bryant Ridge Shelter, I saw Ingmar, whom I hadn’t seen in several weeks, at a tentsite. When I arrived at the shelter, I realized there were not any good spots for a tent. I have not slept in a shelter yet and had no intention of doing so that night.

Question: Should I backtrack to where Ingmar was camped or continue north? I knew there was a spring and campsite uphill in 3 miles. Ugh. That’s a haul at the end of the day. I was very thankful to find a tentsite a mile north, where I spent a serene night. Below is a photo of the sun setting from my tentsite.

Bear Alert Between Petites Gap Road And The James River

The next morning, Ingmar passed my tentsite as I was packing up. I told him that, following an incident on May 12, there was a bear alert and no camping permitted between Petites Gap Road and the  James River. He offered to wait for me at the road so that we could decide where to camp together.

On the trail, I ate more blueberries. I saw many flowers, including dozens of red columbine, one pictured below, which I hadn’t seen since the second day of my hike.

I passed under “the guillotine,” an interesting rock formation pictured below.

Ingmar was waiting for me when I reached Petites Gap Road. We ended up camping at a site a few hundred feet north of the road. It was a fine night, although windy. There was no car traffic after dark.

The next morning Ingmar was on the trail by 6 a.m. I followed about half an hour later. I did not see any bear scat on the trail and question whether the alert is still necessary. Matt’s Creek had many enticing pools of water,  but I didn’t stop because I had scheduled to meet a shuttle to Stanimals Hostel in Glasgow.

I did stop to photograph and admire the pedestrian bridge over the James River, featured above and below. It is quite impressive.

Many hikers are staying at the hiker shelter in Glasgow, which is supported by a local Episcopal church and has a shower, porta-potties, and electric outlets.

I saw many hikers while I ate dinner at Scotto’s , the only restaurant in Glasgow. It is closed on Mondays, so the local Episcopal church hosts a hiker feed. I planned to slack pack about 22 miles from VA 60 back to Glasgow for another night at  Stanimals Hostel and the hiker feed.

22-Mile Slack Pack

I wanted to slack pack for several reasons: I have to hike 77 miles to Waynesboro by Friday afternoon to pick up packages at the post office and to meet my friend Peggy, who is joining me to hike  Shenandoah National Park. Also, the weather forecast is for rain all week. It is mentally easier to hike in the rain when you know you will be indoors at night.

Toothless joined me on the slack pack. A couple of hours into the hike, we were passed by many younger hikers, and PBJ caught up to us. The morning weather was perfect for hiking, and the miles rolled by. We reached the 800-mile mark. Another milestone!

We passed a reservoir and crossed the Pedlar River Suspension Bridge, pictured below.

In the early afternoon, I hiked ahead of Toothless. After 3 p.m. it started to rain lightly. The rain stopped for awhile, but the wind picked up, there was thunder in the distance, and the sky darkened. I donned my rain jacket and rain skirt in anticipation of the storm. It rained fairly hard for more than an hour. The rain stopped for awhile but then resumed lightly.

The rain brought out newts and an eastern box turtle, pictured below.

I passed a hiker who had recently seen a rattlesnake. When Toothless caught up to me, he told me he had seen a bobcat.

PBJ, Toothless, and I all arrived at the trailhead at about the same time. Freedom from Stanimals Hostel was waiting for us. We went directly to the hiker feed at the Episcopal Church. What a spread! There were dozens of hikers who introduced themselves to the congregants. We were all very appreciative of being provided with such a fine meal.

Tomorrow morning I continue north in the rain.






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Comments 5

  • steven edward solinsky : Jun 20th

    No quit in the green mountain girl! I’ve X/C skied with her and there’s no keeping up. For me I would think that 800 miles is plenty (even if it’s 800km). Fine photos and nice to see the box turtle.
    Keep on keeping on.

    • GMG (green mountain girl) : Jul 3rd

      Steven, there are plenty of people who ski faster than me! I’m actually in the bottom third/half at ski training. Just passed 1000 miles today!

  • YeeHa of BeeChHill : Jun 21st

    Great to see this post, GMG! Your narratives are so informative, and surely helpful to other trekkers. I’m especially glad you found ripe blueberries to enjoy along your way. And to have the 1/3 Way marker and 800 milestones be part of your days is awesome. Keep those photos coming – they’re all so interesting and a wonderful part of your journey. Stay safe as you trek onward through the dampness!

    • GMG (green mountain girl) : Jul 3rd

      Thanks Yeeha! I enjoyed my stay at Beech Hill!

  • Charlotte : Jun 24th

    GMG I am so grateful for your posts! They are filled with wonderful information, the photos are beautiful, and your journey is great! You are such an inspiration! I will be turning 70 when I do my thru hike in 2025. I find you incredible! Thank you for adding to my “I know I can” attitude. You’re fabulous.


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