It’s been another amazing day out here on the trail. It was sunny and I think the temperature reached almost 70 today. In the morning we hiked over Sassafras and Justus Mountains and on to Cooper Gap. The climbs weren’t too bad, but proved to make it a tougher day than yesterday.
We seem to be maintaining a good pace while hiking while not really meaning to. We have been keeping our miles under 10 and did just over 9 today into Gooch Gap. No blisters so far and we haven’t had to take any Advil yet, which is good I think. Sure, we’re a bit sore, but I’ve definitely felt worse after the first day of basketball or soccer practice, so I think we’re doing pretty good. We’re having a good time out here so far.
We hit our first trail magic today as we walked into Gooch Gap. A group of mostly older men who gather every year around St. Patrick’s Day gave us some beer and hot dogs. I had 3 of each and it was a good time to get to know some of my fellow thru-hikers and talk to some past thru-hikers. We don’t have trail names yet, but Great Legs from Connecticut, who just got his trail name today, has called us The Mainers. I don’t think that will stick since it’s kind of a joint name, but when we tell people that we’re from Maine, they are always quite interested. I suppose it’s because the trail ends there, and we all want to end up there. For now, we’re Lindsey and Miles, the Mainers, but I’ll let ya’ll know when we get our real trail names. See, the South has already affected my writing skills 😉
We met some other past thru-hikers who we talked to for a bit and then played Viking Chess with us. Too complicated to explain here, but really fun game that involves throwing wooden cylinders at blocks. Ok, so that sounds stupid, but it’s pretty fun. Afterwards, a church group from Nashville was handing out chicken soup. We hit a ton of trail magic in one day and got a good taste of some southern hospitality. Been a long day, so I’m going to hit the hay, although my phone wants to autocorrect “hay” to “bag.” Does it know that I’m going to sleep in a sleeping bag tonight?!