2: Darlington to Peterson Mtn Shelter

Do you ever have one of those mornings where you wake up early but just…can’t get up? You’re just exhausted and sniffly and over it? That was me today. I stayed in bed maybe 3 hours after I first woke up. 
I was on trail by 7:30 though. And it was WINDY. 

The trail was beautiful, with fall leaves and cool winds and just enough sun. I loved it. 

Do you look at these pictures and wish you were here? I wish you were here!

That’s not to say it was ALL perfect. Pennsylvania loves rocks. Steep rocks. 

Flat rocks. 

Stair rocks. 

Water rocks. 

Medium rocks. 

Big rocks. 

Table rock!

Alllll sorts of rocks. They like rocks so much that I stopped for lunch at the Doyle in Duncannon, even though I was tying to make good time today. 

Whatever. I was hungry and I wanted a Coke. 

And I stopped for a break on the blowdown. Sometimes you just need to sit and you might as well sit when you’re crawling over a tree anyways. 

I made it to the shelter before dark, of course, and found a friendly group of sectioners. I had to climb down more rock steps to get water from a dripping water source, then climb back up, and I was exhausted after that. 

I ate dinner, and then, of course, my work never ends. 
It was time to do some homework. 

Today was a good day. It wasn’t perfect. My feet hurt and I had some blisters to drain and I’m tired and I still have more homework to do…but it was good. 
Miles: 22.3
MVP: Coke and chicken fingers

LVP: it’s so cold. I’m in my bag with all my clothes on and I’m still cold. Time for a winter bag!!

1: boiling springs to Darlington shelter

Well. What’s there to say, really? 
I finished my midterms and drove to Pennsylvania. I got to the hostel at….way too late. Or early, depending on how you look at it. The good news is that driving there wasn’t bad at all. I never got tired, which is what I was worried about. 
The hostel was warm and the bed was clean and tidy. I stretched out and slept. 

I woke up at 9, which is not as late as you might imagine, given how little sleep is gotten all week, and the fact that I’d gotten to the hostel at 5am eastern. 
Craig and Jody made me breakfast and I got situated and we hit the road. My original plan was to hike Boiling Springs, PA north to Delaware Water Gap, PA, which is the state line. I didn’t get on the trail until about 12:30 though, which really cut I to my hiking time. And then I got a text from Craig asking if I wanted him to leave my car somewhere closer. I thought I might need to look at my miles again…after all, I’d need to catch up on sleep and do homework while I was out hiking, so I couldn’t be able to do 30s every day I was out. And that’s when I realized. I’d miscalculated. 

So. The NEW plan is to go to Port Clinton, which still won’t be easy but is doable. Of course I’m disappointed because it doesn’t give me a nice, beat bow on northern PA, and of course I’m tempted to skip thanksgiving to finish Port Clinton to DWG, but I won’t do that to my mom. I’ll spend at least one holiday with her this year. 
So anyways, there I was in boiling springs and I met Lost and Found, another sectioner. He started off while I poked around the ATC, but I eventually caught up with him. We hiked together for a bit, talking about Wisconsin and trails and sectioning and all sorts of things. I decided to hike on, but we met up at the shelter. 

There were several SOBOs at the shelter. Some friendlier than others, but I enjoyed my evening, despite the lingering stress of having to change my plan and still having to do homework. 

I did some really incredible rock moving at this low flow water source. Should have been a civil engineer. 
Had to check my hair for a giant spider. Never found him again after the initial sighting, so I assume he’s living inside me now. 
It did feel so good to tuck myself into my down quilt, warm and toasty, the wind blowing outside and me snuggled inside the shelter. No matter what is wrong or what I still have to deal with and figure out, there’s nothing quite like sleeping outside. 
Miles: 14.3

MVP: croissants

LVP: math skillz