Day 7 Tray Mountain to Plum Orchard Shelter 15.5 miles

Thank you Jess for the sleeping pills and with my earplugs I slept so well.
It was a freezing morning so I quickly visited the privy before scuttling back to my tent. I began to pack and made tea. I woofed 2 breakfast bars then dropped my tent. it was still very quite at this end of the camp site.

I was wearing my rain jacket and two other layers as I headed out and for a change I was decending . As  as soon as I got out of the wind it was hot, Phew it was hot and it was still early ,but as I had just started I did not want to stop again . For the first hour it was small hills and then I climbed another monster, so  it was all ahead slow. i chugged up and up oh my god this is brutal. well brutal for a fat, unfit, 57 year-old. on and on it went. At last I made it to the top, slurped  a big mouthful of lemonade and set off down the other side. typical steep.rocky and slippery I decended  for about an hour. so expected  another big climb next . Sure enough  i was soon climbing again and  it was now  hot, roasting in fact . I stopped to take off my rain jacket and woolly hat . should I remove my shirt?..i will leave it for now.
I popped a Jolly Rancher into my mouth and pushed on .Jolly Ranchers are american boiled sweets and i just love them.

The trail was being kind and I was in one of the green corridors that  seem to go on forever ,I’m sure that they are lovely when in bloom. but  in this state  thety are more of a prison .I  pounded along looking at my watch, i had been hiking for 4 hours and needed a break.
At last i spied a nice spot,  dropped my pack and then lay down my tyvek .
I lay on my Tyvek and  relaxed taking  off my shoes and socks . I ate a few snacks and then devoured the apple that i had  been carrying it was delicious. .
After  30 minutes  break I was back on trail.

I knew  it was going to be a tough afternoon as there were several more big climbs  I plodded on and on and up , why are these climbs so steep and so long .
It was no good I needed another break, i stopped and chugged 1/2 litre of  lemonade straight down. These climbs really sapped my energy.

4 miles to go………
2 miles to go

Thank God I’m here. or rather the sign post.. as the shelter is a fairway off trail. but I was here. The 2 nurses from the last shelter were also here..Cheats lol.
The shelter here was very nice  it was vast a three story affair and  it  had the luxury  of several large bear boxes to store our food  so  no hanging required
I quickly put up my tent made tea and the relaxed, in the  late  sun

Start  58.3
Finish 73.5
Miles 15.2

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