What? Free Cookie! OK

Day 45

Rich Mountain Camp to Little Laurel Shelter 11.2 miles – AT mile 294.8

Card of the day – V The Hierophant

Waking up at the shelter, the first thing you could hear was the road traffic.  It started from about 5.30, but soon seemed to die off and then we were left with the song birds and their usual alarm call as dawn approached.

I dident sleep all that well as I could not quite get my temperature right.  Added to this I was set up on a slat, which is never conducive to the best sleep ever.

Either way I was up and out by 8am, and today I left on my own.  I think I still needed a bit of space.

Today we passed a set of Memorial stones at the side of the trail.  I can only imagine they are people that have played a significant role in the local Trail Club?

I stopped for a snack at the Spring Mountain Shelter.

As I was hiking I got lost in the surrounding plant life, as you would expect really.  I wish you could see the greens, there must be over 50!  They range from yellow greens right through to blue greens, there are dull greens and bright greens, and greens of shades I can’t even name.  How can there be so many?  And why don’t they come out on the photos?  I suppose the pictures are just burnt in my memory.  But it was so special.  The moss, the plants, the trees.  All with so much green! (See the pics on my FB page)

Other than the miracle of greens, another quite surprising thing happened.  A fellow hiker told me I smell like town!  I’ve no idea how, but clearly she could still smell the fabric detergent over the smell of my body odour.  You become somewhat nose blind to it.  It did make me laugh though, especially after posting the other week that I should really stop commenting when I thinks people smell nice.  Maybe it’s just a thru hiker thing?

Trail magic – whilst it’s always a wonderful thing, today I met the southern cookie lady.  She came out and said hello and we chatted, then she showed me a lady’s slipper orchid in bloom, these are quite rare and she has 3 of them.  I was able to let her know I had even heard about here from the UK and that made her smile.  So I suppose the magic some times works both ways.

Any way I was in the shelter by 2.  I chilled at a little fire pit.  Just listening to the birds.

My body is starting to feel it today, I wonder if it’s the lack of sleep, the weight we carried in food out of hot springs, or the endless ups and downs?  Two ibuprofen should help.

Short Stop (Chris’s trail name) gave us this bit of wisdom, he’s feet only hurt when he’s using them!

Kegstand and Underhill made their way out of camp at 5ish to hit the next shelter. They hope to be able to sit out tomorrow’s rain.

The rest of us set up camp, had dinner and were in the tents by 7pm.  Oh the hiker life!

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