Day 78: Rausch Gap to 501

Trip Start Mar 15, 2010
Trip End Jul 23, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Pennsylvania
Monday, May 31, 2010

So we have made it back to the car and Chris' tent poles were waiting with the shelter caretaker here. Thanks Sarah... Gear mix ups are actually a lot more common than you'd think. Roughin it and I exchanged underwear at one point!! (after laundry of course!)  Chris and I made sure to carefully make sure we have everything back with it's rightful trekker.

I'm sad that he's leaving, it was a great weekend hiking with him and my cousin Sarah. Chris has officially announced his intentions to thru hike the trail someday (ok I'm probably jumping the gun, but I really think he could and should do it!)

I wanted him to lead so he could set the pace (I didn't want to kill any of my visiting hikers with my trail legs) and he almost killed me!  The dude can hike! Of course I'm sure he'd love to tell you about his exhausted feet and some blisters, but he really tore up the trail. I was impressed...

So this morning we got hiking around 7:30 which was a good thing because it was a hot one (near 90). At the first road crossing there was a guy doing trail magic by giving out nice fresh apples... Fresh fruit is unreal when you are stuck eating peanut butter and pasta sides out here. He also passes out some Jesus pamphlets which we politely read. I hand mine back with the excuse (legitimate) that I don't want to carry anything extra. I think he was somewhat put off, but we had a nice chat with him anyway.

The day has 2 big climbs but luckily we hit both before the hottest part of the day. Chris was dripping sweat but I'll be darned if we didn't hit a 2.5 mph pace!! (very impressive for a newbie)
By the time the heat hit we were on the ridgeline and on our way to a relaxing 2.5 hr lunch.

When we arrive in the late evening at the shelter here "Snack Break" is here doing trail magic!  She made a bunch of lasagna and cookies for us which is just totally delicious. I think I ate 5 pieces. When the caretakers arrive home (they live nextdoor) they get us the tent poles and offer everyone in the shelter ice cream.

I've decided that Chris can't go home! I've seen more snakes and trail magic with him here than I have in the last 500 miles. Beginners luck maybe.

It's going to be hard to hike a big thru hiker day tomorrow...although 17 miles was impressive for chris, I should be going a bit further. Maybe I can catch back up with Willard.  Well hope you all enjoyed hearing about a slightly more social and relaxed weekend of hiking. It'll just be boring old Donner again tomorrow. Keep those comments coming. Missed all of you this weekend.
Hopefully when I finish I'll get to see you too :)
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Rob, Happy to hear all about your last couple days hiking with Sarah and your friend Chris. Glad it worked out so well for everybody--no falls, heat stroke, snake bites, etc. Sounded like fun. Take care, and we'll look forward to more stories along the trail.

Sarah Lampe on

Way to go Chris, I am so impressed! And good luck with that hockey game tomorrow :-) So glad you got your poles back, my apologies for my oversight but glad it worked out OK in the end. Have a safe drive home! Rob, can't wait to read more about your adventures and good luck with the big miles ahead. Wishing you lots more TRAIL MAGIC! I miss the trail (as I'm watching the Flyers currently losing 2-1).

Ma on

Hola querida!
Glad to be home n hear about the fun you had with Sarah n chris!
Fun weekend in cinci with some of your favorite people there also. I'm sure you could tell from my pix that Colin was totally into thr gAme n Marie, Yvie, Andrea n I were having a social time n don't know the score haha.
Ready to send your maildrop but give me more than maps!!! I can't send the Thai green curry chicken I made last night but I'm sure cookies will pack ok.
Miss u! July seems way to far off but I know how fast may went in Asia! Love you! Stay safe! You can be sure I'll be asking Sarah if your feet are really ok n Sharon n I will discuss medical intervention if not!

Karen Kerekes on

Hi Rob, I know that you made the trip for Chris exceptionally fun for him. He will think hiking here in Michigan is boring after being out there. My husband, Jeff and I think that everytime we come back from motorcycling on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We'll get ready to ride here in western Michigan wish we were still out there instead, no comparison. Keep up the happy hiking and we'll keep hoping you get trail magic all along the way.

Karen Belliveau on

Hi Robert, where are you now?

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