Day 87: We had another waffle breakfast at the Teahorse Hostel and then walked back to the trail. The trail took us through a very historic part of Harper’s Ferry, which was neat and pretty. Afterwards we crossed into Maryland! We walked along a bike path for a few miles and saw a bunch of turtles in a green-covered boggy area. We climbed to some cliffs where we could look back to Harper’s Ferry. Further on, we stopped for a break at Gathland State Park, which had an empty tomb. We did about 16 miles and ended up sleeping in the shelter.
Day 88: We got up a little late to a nice morning. We took our first break at the Washington Monument, which also had nice views. It was very hot on the rocks. We hiked to a stream and took extra water to the shelter. Sleeping in the shelter again because the tenting sites are bad.
Day 89: Today was a great day! We crossed the Mason-Dixon Line into Pennsylvania and are now officially out of the south! The day started off with rocky terrain and a view from High Rocks, which you can hang glide off of. Right after lunch we stopped at Pan Mar State Park in MD and it was hoppin’! There was a concession with ice cream and soda. There was a high school reunion, a wedding and a band was playing while people were dancing. There was a bunch of different styles. Very neat! Apparently they have a band playing there every Sunday and people come to dance. We stayed there a while and then stopped at the border to do some Civil War reenactments with bayonets we made from sticks and duct tape. After it was a quick hike to the shelter. In early enough to read!
Day 90: A short 13.6 miles today. Only on big climb in the morning and we crushed it! A view at the top, where I sang “Penn-syl-vania, home of so many rocks!” to the Lion King “Circle of Life”. J-Rex sang along. We made up other songs as we hiked along throughout the day. There were a few rocky sections but they did not last long. We got to Caledona State Park around 3PM and Big Sexy joined our camping group. We got a site and then Torch, a 2011 thru-hiker, came to give us trail magic! He drove us to Walmart to resupply. He also brought us soda, beer, Gatorade, cookies, chips, fruit and these pepperoni things. We grabbed Subway and talked with Torch at our picnic table while eating. He left us with a lot of food. After he left, we showered up and hung our bear bags. Is it a coincidence that all four of us are New Englanders?
Day 91: We’ve officially made it halfway! We started off the day with a few climbs but the terrain leveled out afterwards and was very easy. The first shelter we got to was so well maintained; there were even flower pots! Staying 2 miles closer to Katahdin than Springer tonight.
Day 92: A short 3 miles to the AT museum and it was on to the Half Gallon Challenge (eat half a gallon of ice cream in under and hour). I couldn’t do it! I ate too slow and got so full. I almost finished, but to prevent vomit, I stopped. We stayed and digested for about an hour, then hiked another mile to a beach! We stopped to swim and it felt so great. A hot and humid day. Eventually, we got out and hit the snack bar for a cheeseburger and fries. When we finished eating we were so hot that we jumped back in! Eventually we got out and packed up to hike a quick 6 miles to the shelter. It had bunks so we stayed in it. Hanging bear bags was a funny challenge tonight, but we finally prevailed! A bit of reading before sleep.
Day 93: Today was a pretty short day. We had a little tough terrain to get through, including two rock mazes, before reaching the cornfields. We got into Boiling Springs for a late lunch at the Boiling Springs Tavern. Everyone was super friendly and the food was great! The day was so humid that it was hard leaving the air conditioning. We got back on the trail for a short 2 miles to the parking lot we were to meet Andrew at. It turned out that he got delayed due to an accident and wouldn’t be there for 2 hours. We could hear thunder moving in. We ended up getting a ride to our hotel from J-Rex’s friend! Just in time before rain, too.
Day 94-95: Zero Days 🙂 🙂