Thursday, June 29, 2017 (Day 57)
I woke to a beautiful sunrise. I was packed up and moving by 7:03 am.
I stood and howled off of the mountain. A zest for life coursed through me. Anything is possible.
Just over 10 miles into my hike, I took the .1 side trail to Seely-Woodworth Shelter to gather water. I followed yet another .1 side trail slightly downhill from the shelter to the spring. I was so very pleased with the source. It was a piped spring (meaning someone had positioned some PVC piping to direct the flow more steadily). It was terrifically cold and fast moving. Oh, what joy I take in abandoning use of my filter! I drank two liters before leaving, and took some to go.
I was making decent time, I would be able to cover over 22 miles before night-fall.
I began looking out for a place to sleep. I came to a site that was somewhat littered. I was saddened. I picked up pieces of toilet paper with my trekking poles and put them in the fire pit. I should have packed them out myself. The site did not feel right. I could not stay there. Please, pack out your toilet paper when hiking in the woods.
I came to VA Route 56. It was well trafficked and noisy. Two hikers I have been keeping a similar pace with for some time had just finished setting up camp in a dirt parking area to the side of the road. “What are you guys doing?” I asked. “We are just gonna camp here. F!@k -it.”, one replied in a playful tone. “Yeah. Nice proximity to the road!” I said sarcastically.
I continued on, wondering if they realized that there was supposed to be a nice camp site less than half a mile on. I also wondered if I had been a bit rude in my comment on their selected site. Neither mattered now. I crossed the road and quickly came to a footbridge over Tye River. The bridge crossing was lovely. The sun was just setting over the river. It highlighted the water as it rippled over each stone, and the pink of the flowers in the trees overhead.
I found the large vacant campsite to the left of the bridge, near the river; the sound of rushing water greater than that of cars. It felt right. I made myself comfortable for the night.