While on our walks through the woods Chris and I will talk about what we want after the hike. We definitely want a place in the ‘country’, quiet somewhere in Texas. Where…who knows? However, after getting to the Woodshole Hostel here outside of Pearisburg, VA I have decided I want a place modeled after this. Smells of lavender and herbs, Pandora radio on the computer in the kitchen, wood floors…oh this place is awesome. Probably the best hostel ever. Yet…at least! We are actually staying in the cabin because my dad is meeting us here in a few hours and not in the hostel, but from what I hear of the other hikers, the hostel bunk house is pretty nifty too.
I did write up my 500 miles ‘best of’ in my journal but the internet is slow and I have limited time so I will have to wait until the next time. We are now at mile 626 and will hit 700 just after my dad leaves…by a mile. I am looking forward to McAfee Knob which is coming up at 703…very cool! I am not looking forward to the Dragon’s Tooth, well, maybe if it isn’t raining…it’s a very intense, hands of fist rock climb from what I hear. Should be entertaining for my dad!
Ohhhhh, for the best news…we saw BEARS! Two days ago we were on a ridge and heard rustling…thought it was deer like always. We stopped to listen and a smallish bear…maybe juvy or small adult…ran across the trail. Whoa! Then, Chris noticed on a tree a TEENY TINY baby bear! Seriously, like 15lbs at most. A BABY! But…this is where we got nervous because where was momma? The baby started yelping/barking and then we got a bit nervous and then it it started getting close to the trail and climbed up a tree that was about two feet off the trail. WHOA! Awesome. We inched up and got a semi-crappy photo and then a video too. Chris told me to get my whistle out, I fumbled for a second trying to remember where I put it…in my hip belt pocket…got it out just in case mom came back. Another bear, bigger or smaller who knows???…was right on the other side of the ridge, so we kinda started bolting out of there after the video. We were a bit worried because we knew two other hikers weren’t too far behind us and so we waited a bit and they caught up and said they didn’t see anything.
It was an exciting time! Unfortunately, no uploading of photos is allowed here, so it will have to wait at least another week, but trust me, it’s adorable.
What else…it’s been sweltering humid the past two days. Set a record up here the other day. We’ve had some rain, lots last night. I don’t mind rain, but it can rain at night! The heat…ugh. Maybe it’s TMI, but having wet underwear really blows. Walking in it creates rashes and well, it’s uncomfortable. Humidity…go away!
Other than that, we haven’t had anything too interesting…we were warned about a rocky ridge walk after Chestnut Knob by some southbounders so we’d built it up bigger than it actually was, but it was still about 8 miles of rocky ridge walking. I think it was a warning for what Pennsylvania will be like. Blech. Oh, and I learned about the 13.5 miles of hell I will be going through at the very end of Virginia, called the Rollercoast because of 10 ascents and descents in those 13.5 miles. I don’t think I will be very pleasant that day.
Other than that, Virginia has been beautiful and things are greening up around here. Flowers in bloom…very nice. I could totally set myself up here at this hostel though…going to be hard to climb out of Pearisburg tomorrow. Drat.
Oh, on a niece Ashleigh update: She’s 4lb 14lb oz now, and is slowing getting stronger. They took her off some medicine to see if her oxygen levels go up…they were talking heart surgery. Still won’t make that decision until a few weeks. Hoping she can be home by the end of the month? Who knows? Keep her in your thoughts and prayers.
Special to Chelle: Comment. Write me emails. Tell me about it even if you think I don’t have the time to read while I am in town. Tell me what Kai does and how you feel, even if it is crappy. I miss you.