Day 43 500 miles

Tues 22nd May

I woke around 5.30 and dozed until  6am, before getting up ,I let down my mat  before wandring off to the loo. on my way back I collected my food bag, then  I grabbed my pack and took it outside the shelter so as not to wake people . I  went back and grabbed  my mat and sleeping bag. once outside I stuffed my bag into its stuff sack then rolled up my mat.once done assembled my stove and put on a brew  before making breakfast.
I continued to pack as I sipped my tea. when I  was ready I slung my pack onto my back and headed out  it was 7. 30.
I knew it was going to be a day of climbing so  wanted to  have an early start .The trail started off nice ,  a lovely tread just how I like it but it wasnt long until  it  quickly began to climb  snd  become  knarly and rocky. My poorly foot didn’t like this as every knock sent painwaves up my leg with the odd swear word, but I continued on. later i came to a field of cows I was busy trying to photograph one that I did not hear the hiker approaching me and almost jumped out of my skin.
Sorry Snail didn’t mean to scare you!!
I left the cows and continued climbing, after about an hour I was  at the top with amazing views .
This is why we climb mountains.!!
I continued climbing until I met all the girls who were at the previous shelter. They had  camped on top of the mountain.
We’re you not cold I asked?
Bloody freezing came the reply.
I laughed and carried on
The trail snaked down then around  the mountain before climbing once more
As I walked I noticed a sign for water, so stopped and  filled up it looked and tasted good that i didnt bother to filter.

As i crossed over the road there were some bags of crisps and home made cakes (Trail magic) I grabbed a muffin and bag of crisps. thanks you x.
The trail today was horrid or rather horrid for me it was rocks and  roots or sludgy water. When it’s raining I would normally plough straight throughthis stuff.
Today seemed just hard work and my foot being fragile and tender was not helping.
The hours ticked by, I should be at the shelter by now ?
At last the trail  began to decend  and soon i entered  a  car park, with  toilets. Such a treat when your hiking  lol.
I decided to have a break and take lunch. I had almost finished when it began to rain.
I quickly put my food away , put on my pack cover before  visited the loo. INside the loo was a trash can ,so I quickly returned with my trash.
I pushed on , my  next climb was mount Robert’s,  which was  the mountain that i  thought that i had climbed earlier.! Once again it was more rock and slushy mud , I think I crossed about 50 streams,There was so much  water , water every where and I was still climbing.
I stopped an checked my map, the shelter was  still miles away . I must admit to becoming a bit angry with myself , my foot and the terrain as I had left early and still has miles to go.
Then I noticed horses, these are wild in Virginia. then a deer bounced out in front of me scarring me to death a d I sloped and fell into the boggy stream . dazed a d sho ked I picked myself up .luckily now damage. and walked o . sat on a rock I. fro t as toast surrounded by ponies and several very young foals. it waz lovey to see.

I moved on and eventually arrived at the shelter. it was o lyvwhen k began to look at my maps that i realized that this shelter was much further away than normal. in fact this one was almost twice the distance away .so that’s why I hadn’t reached it by 11.30 Doh Stupid Snail. I took off my shoes and had a proper break . ate some more snacks .

This was the shelter with the Bear issue. a bear had before rather clever and was managing to steal peoples food bags . he had broken off 8″ tree limbs yo steal the food and so the rangers had, had to install bear boxes (Big tool chests) for people to put their food into.

I studied my maps the next shelter was 6 more miles away ….. Yes I can do that so set off. passing several of the new bear boxes.

As I dropped down into the next meadow I could see more horses and longhorn cows

As I walked through the gate I noticed a very new foal lying in the grass oh bless.

But I needed to push on . again out of the meadow and back to rock and some crazy climbing unroll I came to

500 miles whoop whoop just under 1/4 walked I felt so good and began to.push on with a great smile on my face

I I dropped down I came to a stretch of tea that the trail guys have been working on Thank You so much . rocks had been flattened . steps installed the trail bed graded and filled with varying sizes of stone it was amazing and no easy feat.

So thank you so so every much as it was s joy to walk down . Toast had once again caught me up . well she’s younger and fitter. we chatted as we counted fown the miles to the next shelter. she asked me question on the PCT. the shelters the water a d I gladly answered. we were chatting so much the miles flew and soon we had arrived. it was all very near and tidy 2 privys but there was only room for one and no camping aroundcthe shelter….. Weird. I let toast have my spot and I decided to hike on . I had just left when booom went the thunder. oh dear I thought need to find somewhere quick.

I stopped by river and filled up my bottles. then headed out I ended up alking for about  2 miles before spotting a place.
I dropped my pack and my tent was soon up and tea was on

7pm and my day is done.

mile 504.5. miles hiked 18.5

Start 486
Finish 504.5
mileage 18.5 miles
Remaining 1686 Miles

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