Thursday, May 22, 2014

Harpers Ferry

Well I've made to the physiological half way point a little over two months into my hike. Been 162 miles since Waynesboro, decided to move right through Front Royal after resupply and lunch. Blew through the Shenandoahs in only 4.5 days and only saw one bear which was at night, so I'm guessing it doesn't really count. If it wasn't for the 2.5 days of rain the Shenandoahs it would have been great; terrain was realitivily level (a little boring at times), not too many rocks, and at least 1 Wayside (or restaurant) every day. The Waysides of course over charged on all there foods, which seems especially so when traveling thru small towns. The much fabled blackberry milkshakes were very good but the almost $5 price made them somewhat less appetizing. Stayed in a shelter every night in Shenandoah mostly for easy pack-up in the morning and rain. Thankfully the park was not nearly as crowed as I feared it was going to be, only seeing about 2 -3 groups of day hikers a day. Thankfully the weather was fairly cool most of the days before getting to Front Royal which made bigger days much easier. After leaving Front Royal around 5 we had a fairly steep climb in 90○ with about 800% humidity, I guess you could say I got a little sweaty. Stayed at the lovely Jim and Molly Shelter which like all shelters since the beginning of Shenandoah are very well maintained and generally look very nice, thanks PATC. This particular shelter had a solar shower where I had a solid 20 seconds of freezing water followed by a bunch of dribbling. A bunch of people decided to stay at Bears Den Hostel a few days later but since it being only 10 miles in and 12:00 I moved on to The Blackburn Center. Rained about 6 of the 8 more miles to Blackburn, but for once welcomed it due to the heat. Thankfully a group of friends rented out the cabin and invited us to dinner.Got to Harpers Ferry 3 days out of Front Royal every day being very hot and humid. Got to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in Harpers Ferry around 12 the next day and registered as thruhiker number 90. Stayed at the Teahorse Hostel which was very nice to sleep in a bed and take a real shower again. Harpers Ferry seemed like a very interesting, historical town but also extremely touristy, would have been cool to do a little more exploring while there. Walked only 4 miles the following day almost entirely on the C/O Canal Path which was very nice change of pace and flat. Stayed at Harper's Ferry Hostel (technically not actually in Harpers Ferry) because I still needed a break from a week worth of 20+ days, pretty much slept from when I got there at 6pm to when I left at 7:30am and still woke up tired. 

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