Day 82: Palmerton, PA to Wind Gap, PA

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

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Flag of United States  , Pennsylvania
Friday, June 4, 2010

Writing from a roadside motel in Wind Gap just off the trail. Today was a long day of rocks... Probably the worst so far. My feet are numb and sore at the same time if that makes any sense. It will be really nice to sleep with a real pillow tonight!

Woke up early in the jail and headed across the street (not a parole violation!) for a big breakfast. I was very hungry so I ordered two breakfasts... Great idea :)  Then we packed up and four of us got a hitch right from in front of the hostel with a plumber in his big van. We sat on boxes of tools and stuff!

The first item of business on the trail was a 1000 ft climb up an exposed rock face. Even at 9am it was already sweltering in the sun. This climb was apparently the most difficult south of New Hampshire. Yikes! Had to rely on lots of hand holds and some spots that were basically rock climbs but with a pack on! It was such a relief to be on top.

The entire area around Palmerton visibly shows the damage from the pollution caused by the country's largest zinc smelting plant. It is now a superfund site. Of course I remembered this after I had eaten a whole bunch of beautiful blueberries. Mmmmm, blueberries... Uh oh heavy metals!

It was a pleasure to get back into the healthy forest out of the sun and rocks. The other problem was that the ridge generally has no water. I went 15 miles until I stopped and still had to trek .5 downhill to find more. Not ideal.

Enjoying just watching TV and preparing to try to race to the post office in the morning before they close. So excited to soon finish PA and the rocks. My trailrunners are about to give out. The 20 mi today were almost as hard on them as me! I'll be looking to replace them if they can just hold out 15 mi!

Sarah asked about a delicious item I had in my trail mix, and everyone might enjoy trying these if you haven't already: yogurt covered cherries... They didn't have a brand name but I found them at Matzbaugh's grocery store in Duncannon, PA!  Delish!

Other question was how do I hydrate? Well today I started out with 2.5 liters to go 15 mi. That's cutting it close but I also try to always "camel up" by drinking a bunch before I hike at the water source. Usually I try to not carry too much water because water is about the heaviest thing we carry. (one liter is 2.2 lbs!!)
Hope everyone Is well. Good night!
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