Harpers Ferry, WV(1022.8) to Dahlgren Backpack Campground(1040.6) 17.8 Miles
Today was my longest, short day ever. What I mean by that is even though I only did 17.8 miles, I didn't get to camp until 8:30. It's the latest I've ever gotten to camp. Several factors worked against me, my late start from the hotel, my love of history, and most importantly, my rockstar status.
I decided to sleep in a little this morning. I was up at 7:00 and took my time getting ready. I enjoyed the continental breakfast at the hotel and didn't leave until 10:00. I then had a two mile walk to the historical part of Harpers Ferry. I walked around there, doing the tourist thing until 12:00. I asked a local where I could buy some itch cream for my poison ivy rash(long and unpleasant story that I'll spare you on the details), and he offered to drive me to a store a few miles away. The local, Potter, thru-hiked the trail SOBO in 2013 so we had a nice chat on the way to the store. I finally headed away from town at 12:30.
The rockstar status came while I was in town. Every place I went to tourists stopped me to ask questions about the AT. At one point I had a group of six people talking to me. It was pretty neat. I even had a few ask if they could take pictures with me. Even though it was cool, it really slowed me down this morning, plus it was hard to walk with such a big head(I was pretty full of myself).
Today was so slow going for me because every time I turned around I came to a historical sight. I felt the need to stop at every one of them to take pictures and read the signs.
This is where I got stopped by 6 tourists
St. Peter's Roman Cathedral Church
I have several more pictures, but you get the point. I wasn't moving very fast today.
The hiking was very easy, I could have done the 4 state challenge, but I would have missed out on all of the historical landmarks. I took a good hard look at my priorities and decided that walking through four states was silly. Tomorrow has a lot more historical sights as well, including one that I've been looking forward to since I started.
I hiked most of the day with, NonToxic. An environmental scientist that was very interesting to chat with. He started the trail on May 9th, which is just unbelievable. He hasn't taken a single zero day yet. His wife ships him food so he gets out of town quickly as well. Although, he's not very fast hiker, he does long mileage days. We decided to camp here tonight because the primitive campground has running water and flush toilets. What we did not expect was the boyscout troop and parents being camped here. The area looks like a tent city and the only spot left to hang my hammock at is right next to the bathrooms. The adults have done a nice job keeping the kids quiet, I did not expect that. I plan on getting up early tomorrow. I'd like to finish Maryland before I stop tomorrow night, which will be a very long day.
I'm not sure if I missed it, or there wasn't one, but I never saw a sign marking the end of West Virginia and the beginning of Maryland. I also took a lot of pictures with my camera(Aunt Liz I have pictures for you), but the Samsung app that allows me to transfer pictures to my phone is no longer working. I have to wait for Samsung to update the app and I'm not sure how long that will take. I'm pretty upset about it because I have some great pictures from Weverton Cliffs.
"The road of life twists and turns and no two directions are ever the same. Yet our lessons come from the journey, not the destination." -Don Williams Jr.