Knot Maul Branch Shelter
Day: 65
Mileage: 540.7

Miles from SpringerFeaturesElevation
544.8Va. 617, Davis Valley Road (2,580') 2580
545.5Spring (2,610')?blue-blaze 2610
546.6Davis Path Campsite (2,840') 2840
549.4Little Brushy Mountain (3,300') 3300
550.6Crawfish Valley along Reed Creek (2,600') 2600
552.4Tilson Gap, Big Walker Mountain (3,500') 3500
553.9Va. 610, Old Rich Valley Road (2,700') 2700
555.4Va. 742, Shady Grove Road, North Fork of Holston River (2,460')?bridge 2460
555.8Spring (2,550') 2550
556.4Va. 42, Ceres, Va. (2,650') 2650
557.3Brushy Mountain (3,200') 3200
558.5Knot Maul Branch Shelter (2,880') ?19.3mS; 9.4mN 2880
06/18/96 10:41 pm

No its not that I am going to sleep this late, I just woke up from my nap!

Todays hike was better than befor took my break. I could actually look up from time to time without killing myself on rocks or roots (although there were still some sections this was true). But the heat is still a BIG problem.

Woke up this morning quite early (6:45am) and had a good breakfast and then got a cab into the post office. The postmaster figured out I was the one from last nigh, but didnot seem upset with me, nice lady! Got out early enough so my first feild crossing was not in the blazing sun.

I think I whent up more of those stiles today thsan ever before and could have done without as many; they are hard on the knees.

New equipment seems be be much lighter than before. I cant wait to get rid of some of this food, my pack will be so light! New clothing, including the mesh shirt, seems to be working out too.

Water source at this shelter SUCKS! Had to pump just to get it in my waterbag. Also very silty. I proobably took a little life off my waterfilter doing it too.

Well its getting late, time to go to sleep now....

06/19/96 8:15 am

Had a dream last night wich is bugging me. I was in an English class and the assignment given to us was .sell someting.. I got very upset when I asked for more parameter like what to sell, oral or graphic ext. (I recall saying someting like: .I.m a computer programmer dammit, I need more parameters.) but I got no more information and everyone was laughing at me calling me infexable and accusing me of having no imagination.

Is this true? Might be......

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Jenkins Shelter
Day: 66->67
Mileage: 559.6

Miles from SpringerFeaturesElevation
558.5Knot Maul Branch Shelter (2,880') ?19.3mS; 9.4mN 2880
559Campsite and spring (2,810')?water for Knot Maul Branch Shelter 2810
559.6Lynn Camp Creek (2,400')?footbridge 2400
560.4Lynn Camp Mountain (3,000') 3000
561.9Lick Creek (2,300')?footbridge 2300
563.3USFS 222, Va. 625 (2,300') 2300
566.1Spring-fed pond (3,800')?water for Chestnut Knob Shelter 3800
566.2Chestnut Ridge (3,700') 3700
567.9Chestnut Knob Shelter (4,409') ?9.4mS; 10.7mN Burkes Garden Overlook 4409
569.3Walker Gap (3,520')?water for Chestnut Knob Shelter 3520
569.5Spring (3,570') 3570
574.1Va. 623, Burkes Garden Road, Garden Mountain (3,880') 3880
575.1Davis Farm Campsite (3,850') 3850
577.7Stream (3,700') 3700
578.6Jenkins Shelter (2,470')?10.7mS; 13.8mN 2470
06/19/96 9:21 pm

YES! 18.9+ miles today and boy am I going to pay for them. I tripped and fell and realy bashed my left knee but good. Don.t feel any pain yet (maybe due to the 3 advils I took) but I am not sure if I will be able to move tomarrow.

Other than that it was a pretty good hike, but water was scarce and sweat was in abundance. I had to rig my shirt out 4 times!!! It also threatened to thunderstorm all day but the best I got was a drizzel wich did little to cool me down.

Here now with a guy out for the night and Sunshine and No Worries from the IceHouse Gang.

Hoping for good weather and a good knee for tomarrow.

06/20/96 7:05 pm

I decided to give my brused knee the day off, and the rest of my body and mind had to go along with it and got quite board. I did Life, The Univers and Everything; that is to say I read it, contemplated it and did everything I could think of in it (within the confinds of the shelter area). Had a shower, did wash, built a fire and had a feast. A good day off, but I realy did get the urge to hike a number of times. I had quite a few guests today, all either the flying, insect veriety or the furry kind. Not a sole in the area since Sunshine, No Worries and Pete (the guy out for a few days) left early this morning.

The cammpfire ashes went to to the fire I built. I should say I used NO matches, Pete.s fire from last night still had coals burried deep in the ashes and I got it going from that. Yes I still got it.

06/20/96 8:05 pm

Sitting here figuring out where Keith and I will be meeting, I find out that, if I continue at this pace, I will come no where close to finishing half the trail. Even if I double my pace it would be doubtful. I am disapointed by this revelation, but not completely surprised. I have stated from the begining that PA was my goal, but I also had the attitude of .well if I want to stay an extra day in town so be it. I have no Kadahdin deadline to worry about.. But still it bothers me and I do not know completely why. There are some obvious answers like: 1000 miles is a round number and sounds impressive, PA is half the trail and if I can do half in 3 months I could have made it all the way in 6, by only doing 700 or so I did not meet my goal and people will know.

Why should I care if .people know. I am still pleased to have come this far when most would have washed out by now. Why do I always care what others think. I wish I would stop looking external validation. I am proud of this hike however far I get and that is that!

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Helveys Mill Shelter
Day: 68
Mileage: 574.1

Miles from SpringerFeaturesElevation
582Brushy Mountain (3,080') 3080
583Va. 615, Suiter Road, Laurel Creek (2,450') 2450
589.9U.S. 52 (2,920') Bland, Va. 24315 Bastian, Va. 24314 Bluefield, W. Va. 2920
590.3Va. 612, I?77 overpass (2,750') 2750
590.7Va. 612, Kimberling Creek (2,700') 2700
592.1Helveys Mill Shelter (3,090') ?13.8mS; 10mN 3090
06/21/96 8:34 pm

Well it was nude hiking day (the summer solstice) and NO I did not hike nude, ore see anyone hiking nude for that matter.

It was a nice hike today and my knee did not hurt at all. I was even able to get in a shower at Laurel Creek wich had a neat waterfall you could sit in, boy did it feel great!

The book wasn't kidding when it said a long way down to the water, but it was a good source and the trail for the first half was nicely switch backed (it lookes as if they intend to switch back the rest really soon).

Found a packcover on the trail today wich belongs to No Worries (he left a message for me asking if I found one and if I could bring it to Pearisburg). Funny, I lost my bandana today....I wonder if someone found that.

Also when I got to the shelter someone had left, I assume on purpose, a bag with candybars and M&M.s. Just what the doctor ordered, more calories and I didn.t have to carry them!! I wonder if that was No Wories way of paying me to catch him?

Seem to have the shelter to myself again tonight, boy I could do woth some nice intellegent conversation. I think I said maybe 5 words to two people today and that was it.

Equipment note: The Omniseal Hydroseal Pouch that I purchased at Walasi-Yi Center way back when is starting to give out and I think it is no longer waterproof. Need to start using ziplocks again until I can get a replacement.

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Trent's Grocery
Day: 69
Mileage: 590

Miles from SpringerFeaturesElevation
598.7Va. 611 (2,820') 2820
600.1Brushy Mountain (3,101') 3101
601.8Jenny Knob Shelter (2,800') ?10mS; 14.5mN 2800
603Va. 608, Lickskillet Hollow (2,200') 2200
606.4Brushy Mountain (2,800') 2800
608.2Kimberling Creek (2,090')...suspension bridge 2090
608.3Va. 606 (2,040') 2040
06/22/96 10:08 pm

Well, made it annother 15.5 mile day today. Woke up at 7am and was to Jenny Knob Shelter around noon. Took a 3 hour lunch break there. It would have been shorter but it was a hell of a long way to the water, longer than the last shelter. After the break it was hot, but the hike was easy to here. Set up camp, had a great shower and then 2 cheeseburgers for dinner. Made some phone calls and that was the day.

Oh, I did cross the new suspention bridge by Va 606, great bridge. ? teens were by it blairing music and swiming. I could tell how close I was to the bridge by how loud the music was.

Here at the campground once again by myself. Thats 3 nights now without people to talk to, at least tonight I had a phone. What hapened to all the other hikers?

06/23/96 9:18 am

Well I was camping last night for the first time since, I think, the Smokeys and wouldn.t you know it rained. The thunder and lightning made it look as if it was going to be a bad one, but luckely this was not the case and I only heard a light rain.

For being next to the road, I got a good nights sleep, but still went to bed late due to electric lighting (The waiting for the sun to go down syndrom).

Well off for annother 10+ mile day.

EQUIPMENT NOTE: My solar blanket has holes in it. They might be from mice. And here I have been saying that I have had no mice dammage to my equipment yet. No telling how long they have been there.

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Woodshole Hostel
Day: 70
Mileage: 603.3