I got up early this morning and started hiking before 7:00 a.m. I was really excited about getting to Harper’s Ferry so I walked a brisk pace over the rocky trail. I arrived in Harper’s Ferry before 10:00 and went directly to the headquarters for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. There I had my photo taken and registered as thru-hiker number 219 for the tear.
I ran into several hikers that I have not seen for a while including Salad Days, Rissquit, Postman, and Buffalo who I met on my third day on the trail at Blue Mountain Shelter in Georgia. Postman and Buffalo said that they had been hiking together for a while and they filled me in on the whereabouts of several hikers who are now pretty far behind us.
Harper’s Ferry is a cute little town and I enjoyed walking down to the tourist section of town. I contacted Jay Jordan who had invited me to a Memorial Day cookout at his home. As I have mentioned before, Jay is the son of Shorty Jordan, the family friend whose photo I am carrying with me to Maine. Shorty was an avid outdoorsman who would have liked to hike the AT but passed away before he had the chance. Shorty and his wife Marlene were close friends of my in-laws and that’s how I met Shorty.
Anyway, Jay had organized a fantastic cookout with all the traditional dishes. His sister, Juane, and her family were there too, along with other special friends. We talked about hiking the AT, other hikes that people had done or wanted to do, and we talked about Shorty and his love of the outdoors. On the living room wall Jay has a great photo of his Dad sitting on the beach looking out to sea. It’s obvious that his kids have great memories of him.
It was a great day and I loved spending time with Jay and Juane and their family and friends. I feel motivated and ready to continue to Maine.
Here’s a photo of me with Jay and Juane at the cookout today.