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Appalachian Trail Day 50

by Krispy Kritter
05/25/2010 03:49:46 P.M.
May 25, 2010 - Day 50 - Tuesday
Destination: Laurel Creek Shelter
Starting Location: Pine Swamp Branch Shelter
Today's Miles: 18.50
Trip Miles: 663.60

"You can only do what you can do." ~ King Lui, Glastonbury Castle

I couldn't figure out the name of Pine Swamp Branch Shelter. It wasn't near a swamp and it did not have very many pine trees. The shelter was dedicated to Trimpi which was the name of another shelter near Troutdale, Va. I guess this is one of those AT mysteries solved at a later date.

Left the shelter at the usual time, 7:00 , and in the usual weather conditions, raining. I was debating on whether to put on dry socks or the wet ones. My boots claim to be Gore Tex but walking in wet grass completely soaks my socks. Compound that with walking in the rain and I am swimming in my boots. I decided to put the wet ones on. The first one didn't feel right. Timber said she was going to go with dry socks. That way at least starting out would be dry. I changed my mind and went with dry socks and between the mud, grass and rain my feet were totally wet within minutes.

Today's main event was the rocks. Slippery loose rocks that made you lose your balance whenever you lost concentration. The rocks started shortly after the shelter at Va 635, Stony Creek and didn't let up until after Rocky Gap, Va 601 a total of 13 miles. I remember this section from '04 and the climb is still just as tough. The weather didn't help either. The bright side - it wasn't pouring down rain.

Had lunch at War Spur Shelter and an entry into the shelter registry summed it up best:
"5/25 Whoever stole the sun, we want it back. Please return it to its original place, there will be no questions asked. Thank you." Stix

The rain did stop in the afternoon and the sun was trying to peek through the clouds. At one point I thought I would have to get my sunglasses out, but couldn't remember where I put them in my pack 4 days ago. When I got to the shelter I gathered the driest wood possible and built a fire to dry my boots and socks. Everything is now bone dry but I smell like burnt wet wood. I'll take the smell.

You can check up on Wayne's almost daily progress at his Trail Journal.