Miles from Springer Mountain: 275.0
Miles to Mount Katahdin: 1917.0
After my wonderful, unique night at Standing Bear Hostel I was encouraged and well rested to push towards my next shelter in good timing. Unfortunately, my timing was about 30 minutes too short. While atop of Max Patch I encountered sleet that eventually turned into snow. Thankfully I only had a couple miles to go before I reached Roaring Fork Shelter- it was packed, which helped with warmth, but nonetheless we were all cold. I woke up to a complete snow covering, on the top of Bluff Mountain there was 2+ inches of snow, but amazingly upon descent the weather was 50+ degrees. Quite the conundrum for the body, but it was a welcome environment to sleep in. After walking 14.7 miles I reached Deer Park Shelter and settled in for the night. Last night may have been my warmest on trail, our elevation was the lowest since before the Smokies which played a huge part. The shelter may have had the smallest privy on the AT, to use it the door had to be kept open… NO PEEKING!
Today I nero’d in Hot Springs, NC. A delightful little town somewhere between relevance and nowhere. The diner has cinnamon rolls that were arguably better than Amish rolls. Graciously I met up with Haley’s parents, Paul and Brenda. We are all staying together at Elmer’s Sunnybrook Inn, a house on the Historic Registry that Earl Shaffer (LOOK HIM UP!!) stayed in. It is truly a unique place that can only be experienced by staying here. I can only preface it by saying that you will never stay in a home like this in the north. We went to dinner at the only tavern in town, with 50 beers and a varietal menu. It was a great dinner and filling after nights on trail. Paul and Brenda treated me to a great day off the trail and I am so thankful they took a day off of their vacation to see me, I am blessed to have such wonderful people in my life.
After a relaxing day today I am going to push onwards towards Roan Mountain, there I will get to see Haley and take a much needed zero. I don’t know how much service I will have until then, but I will blog when I can. The next big goal is Damascus, hopefully in less than two weeks! Onward!