Location: Blackburn Center, Virginia
After a quick breakfast at the hotel, I said goodbye to Mom and Dad. I felt refreshed after my long weekend break, and I was ready to return to the trail. I checked the post office before I left. Cold Feet had sent me a maple leaf sugar cube from Maine. She has gone to Maine to hike the 100 mile wilderness. She basically travels up and down the Appalachian Trail and only hikes the sections that she wants. One hundred miles here, one hundred miles there, she continues to travel around so she can close gaps between the sections that she hikes.
Not Bad and I walked out of Harper’s Ferry today. I was upset to leave Mom and Dad again, but I knew that the faster I moved south, the sooner I would be in North Carolina and able to see them and the rest of the family once again. I left Harper’s Ferry with renewed vigor, but Not Bad dragged behind me a bit. The burns on my hips have mostly healed. They did not penetrate deep beneath the surface of the skin, so a few days of burn cream and Neosporin applications caused the thin scabs to flake away. On the way out of Harper’s Ferry, we stopped at a diner that was right by the trail. I ate a pizza, and Not Bad had a salad. His stomach still ached, and the pains in his lower abdomen caused his face to grimace. After a long lunch, we continued again on the trail. We crossed into Virginia, which hosts over 500 miles of the Appalachian Trail, nearly one quarter of its entire length. Near the border, a sign marks 1000 miles to Springer. It feels great to now count down from 1000 instead of up to it. It boosts my morale to know that we no longer have to count the fourth digit, and the distance to Springer finally seems manageable now that we are in the 900s. The marker did not motivate Not Bad, who still struggled with his stomach.