It was another nice day of hiking yesterday, mostly along a rolling ridge with beautiful views of farms to the west and the sounds of Interstate 81 to the east.
I saw several snakes today, including a huge black snake in a small tree (see photo).
At about the 15 mile point I made a half mile detour to a small country store called Trent’s Grocery for a nice lunch – bacon and Swiss hamburger, onion rings and a chocolate shake. I learned that a big lunch is not a good thing if you still have miles to walk. In the future I think I’ll stick to light snacks throughout the day!
After lunch I had a long walk along Dismal Creek and crossed many small streams and springs. Fortunately there was not much climbing. This section of the trail is maintained by the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club and by the number of blowdowns I had to go over, under and around, they have not been doing much maintenance recently (see photo). By the way a blowdown is usually a tree or large limbs that have been blown down and are blocking the trail. Maintenance crews work hard to clear them as quickly as possible.
I got to the shelter and met Grim, Dump Truck, Clever Girl, Whistle, Little Seed, and a couple others whose names I can’t remember right now.
Today I have an easy day, only 17 miles to Pearisburg. At the ten mile point I will stop at the Woods Hole Hostel just to see it. It’s supposed to be really nice. Then I’ll hike the rest of the way into Pearisburg where I’ll stay for the night. I’m looking forward to dinner at Pizza Hut, taking a shower, doing laundry, and sleeping in a bed at the Plaza Motor Hotel which caters to hikers.