Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Flowers enroute to McAfee Knob - McAfee Knob - Roanoke Airport from McAfee knob - Views from Tinker Cliffs(2 pics)
Day 25 Journal Entry: Had a good start for the day when a gentleman gave me a 1.0 mile ride from the Catawba General Store to the AT. I then hiked the 10.4 miles to the Lamberts Meadow Shelter. It was a hot, about 85 deg., so I drank lots of water. Today's visibility was excellent so the views were great from McAfee Knob and Tinker Cliffs. To the west I could see beautiful valleys and to the east I could see Roanoke and the Roanoke airport. Shelter has one other thru hiker and several people hiking for the weekend. Two hikers that got here early watched the resident black snake catch a mouse. YEA SNAKE! Daleville tomorrow and a down day on Monday. Betty is suppose to visit. Can't wait. Good night.
View from Dragon Tooth - General Store Sign - Catawba Valley General Store
Day 24 Journal Entry: I got up this morning and it was 48 deg. That makes getting going easier. However, this afternoon it was up in the low 80's. I hiked 12.6 miles today with a .8 mi. side trip to VA Hwy 624. Today there was a lot of up, down, up, down and rough trail. With the heat it was a draining day. Good news is that I got a ride from the AT to Catawba, VA and that I ate at the Home Place Restaurant. Meals were family style and I had fried chicken, roast beef, biscuits, potatoes, gravy, green beans, mac and cheese, and peach cobbler. Tonight I regained my appetite. The Catawba Valley General Store lets you pitch your tent in a small field or sleep on the floor in the garage/rec building for $3. What a deal. Sweet dreams.
Eggs in nest at Trail register(2 pics) - Red buds blooming - Me at Audie Murphy Memorial - Audie Murphy Memorial
Day 23 Journal Entry: Highlight of the day was"Trail Magic". 1 & 1/2 miles after I left the Niday Shelter there it was. I had 2 miniature 3 Musketeers and a Sierra Mist. What a lift for the spirits. I only hiked 10.1 miles, it was sunny and 72 deg. so it made for a good day. At the halfway mark there was a memorial to Audie Murphy. Murphy was the most decorated US serviceman of WW II, the highest honor being the Medal of Honor. He was killed in 1971 when the plane he was flying in hit the mountain near the memorial. Tonight Sunny and I are the only two in the Pickle Branch Shelter. Tomorrow to Catawba for the Homeplace Restaurant for the buffet. Goodnight.
Iris type flowers along trail.
Day 22 Journal Entry: I started the day with light snow and a temperature of 34 deg. As I walked to the first shelter for lunch, heavier snow and sleet was added. One of the thru hikers that I lunched with had no long pants and no gloves. Those people that started hiking in Georgia in Feb. and Mar. are tough. By evening the sun was shining and it was 48 deg. when I arrived at the Niday Shelter. Days total mileage was 15.4 miles. I feel pretty well except my feet ache. After I get my boots off and my Crocs on and then go to bed they get better by the hour. It is suppose to warm up tomorrow and be sunny. Hooray
Burros at a farm along the AT.
Day 21 Journal Entry: I hiked 15.5 miles and tented where the AT crosses VA Hwy. 601. Probably need to to add a couple extra miles for the time I was temporarily disoriented. Started the day with some rain, then some sleet and finished off with some hail. By late afternoon the sun came out and it was cool but relatively pleasant. My tent site was not great, but I was tired and it was time to quit. I feel pretty good for having hiked the miles that I did.
Privy at Pine Swamp Branch Shelter - Fireplace at Shelter - Pine Swamp Branch Shelter
Day 20 Journal Entry: It poured down last night at the Rice Field Shelter, but Pen J and I were in the shelter so we slept well. The rain stopped about daybreak, so we were able to get up and go. Pen J left about 45 min. before I did. For the first couple hours it was foggy, but then we had broken clouds most of the day. I hiked the 12.5 mi. to the Pine Swamp Branch Shelter in about 5 & 1/2 hrs. I should have slowed my pace. When I got to the shelter it took me way to long to recover. I need to slow my pace, take more breaks and eat more enroute. When I got to the shelter Pen J was there, but after 20 minutes he headed to the next shelter. It is 8:30 with no other hikers so it looks like I will have the whole place to myself. I have cell phone reception so I got to talk to Betty. Good Night, John Boy
Flowers on the trial while hiking to Rice Field Shelter
Day 19 Journal Entry: Hiked 1 mi. to the AT and then 6.8 miles to the Rice Field Shelter. Had one climb of about 1,200 ft. in less than a mile. After that I recovered pretty well. Met Pen J and the two of us are here for the night. It is raining now and the sound on the tin roof is good. Suppose to rain all night and then stop tomorrow. Showers for a couple days and then clear. Hope to make 12-14 miles tomorrow.