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Travis "BevoHi" Hildebrand
Begins: Mar 20, 2016
Date: Wed, Jun 1st, 2016
Start: PA route 850 (8.5mi short of Duncannon, PA)
End: Peters Mountain Shelter
Daily Distance: 20.1
Trip Distance: 1,157.9
Hours Hiked: 8.2
Min Elevation: 338
Max Elevation: 1391
Entry Lat: 40.425577
Entry Lng: -76.877753
Min Temp: 65
Max Temp: 87
Entry Visits: 679
Journal Visits: 124,767
Guestbook Views: 4,003
Guestbook Entrys: 223
Day 74: Peters Mountain Shelter
I hiked 20.1 miles today with a 1053 ft elevation change in 8.23 hours from PA route 850 (8.5mi short of Duncannon, PA) to Peters Mountain Shelter. At this point, I have hiked 1157.6 total miles averaging 15.64 miles per day (including 0 days).
Camping with Chance
Suzi, Garfield and I woke about 6:40AM and were out of the motel room by 7AM. Suzi drove us to the starting point for the day and we started hiking about 7:25. I tried to avoid the wet weeds by walking on the road to the trail, but in the first 100 steps on the trail, it just didn't matter. The weeds were as high as my thighs and they were wet with dew. The dew got on my shoes, and legs, and ran down into my socks. Pretty soon, it felt like I was walking in a stream. Oh well, that's how it goes out here. In about a half a mile, the trail widened and my shoes started drying out. The other thing about the weeds included me knocking all of the pollen out of the weeds. A yellow cloud trailed behind me for Garfield to wade through. It also left my black shorts mostly yellow with pollen. This pollen is still sticking to my shorts as I write this from my hammock at the end of the day.
There were about 5 miles of semi-rocky terrain before going down into Duncanon. The rocks weren't as bad as I imagined after reading Z-man's journal from 3 years ago. During the rocky portion, we met another thru-hiker named "Trail Jester." He got his name from being a funny guy in the shelters early on. He started on March 26th. This was 6 days after I started. It's not a race, but he is winning. He is 27 and is from New Hampshire. He quit his job as a restaurant manager to hike the trail.
Like Z-man said in his journal, the blazes were hard to follow getting into town. I'm glad I had my Guthook's application on my iPhone to help us follow the red line. We got to the Doyle about 10:35AM, but it didn't open until 11AM. Suzi and the boys came to meet us there and we grabbed a cold soda. Trail Jester needed to resupply, so Suzi took him up to the grocery store. While we were at the Doyle, there was a guy painting the rocks on the outside of the building. It was looking really good for the parts he already painted.
Just before Garfield and I took off, PeanutButter and Wonderland headed out. We had about 2.5 miles of road walking to get across 2 bridges before the trail turned to dirt again. During this time, we passed PeanutButter, Wonderland, and another new gal named Snowball from Germany. I only spoke briefly with her on my way up the hill out of Duncanon.
We met Suzi and the boys at the next road crossing where we picked up Chance and our packs so we could camp at Peters Mountain Shelter area tonight. While in the parking lot, Suzi was running the trail magic station. When they got there, they told me a tale of a bunch of teenagers who just about crashed into a tree in the gravel parking lot. They were 6 of them in a 5 person car. The girls were in bikinis. Some of them were smoking. My boys were not impressed with any of their actions. Shortly after they left, a cop came and parked near the parking lot. Chance also found a couple of copperhead snakes by some rocks while they waited for Garfield and me. He took some pictures.
I downed two Dr. Peppers and had some cookies and an apple before putting my pack on for the last 3 miles. We had already hiked 17 miles today, slack packing. The pack felt heavy. Before we left two other new people showed up.
Toxic Foot and Robin are a couple from Germany. They started on March 9th. They enjoyed some trail magic before we left. One more set of people walked up and the first one took off in his car and let us know his buddy wanted to speak to us. We waited for him to pull his car around. This guy was very interesting. His name was Ben Kanober. He just hiked 6 miles today at the young age of 96. He apparently thru-hiked in 1986. He apparently took a small fall today and had a gash on the corner of his eye. There was some blood on his shirt from his cut, but he looked like he would be ok. All I can say is that I was very impressed that a 96 year old was out hiking 6 miles on the AT. Impressive!
We finally hit the trail for our final 3 miles of the day with Chance and our full packs. Everything went fine. It didn't take long before Garfield and Chance were talking about 3DS games. I followed behind and tried to understand what they were talking about. That never happened.
We got to camp about 3:40. I used the privy immediately. Chance and Garfield found an area to camp about 200 yards north of the shelter on a ridgeline. Chance setup his tent while Garfield and I set up our hammocks. They looked very good together. The water situation here is not ideal. You have to go down about 300 stone steps about 500 vertical feet to get to a pretty good spring. It is a long way back up. Take all of your water bottles because you won't want to make that trip a second time.
Lastly, I'd like to point out that the poison ivy is really starting to appear in the woods. It has many different looks out here. Some are shiny, some are not. Some have red in them, some do not. They hide in with other weeds, but the poison ivy always has 3 leaves on them. They are mostly smooth edges with a thumb pattern, but some of them have some jagged edges as well. Be careful out there with the poison ivy. I know it will get me eventually, but I'm really looking out for it now.
First: This is the first night of camping with Chance on the AT. Today was the first time I met a 96 year old that previously hike the AT and did 6 miles of it today.
Equipment: I found a couple of little holes in my cuben fiber tarp. I need to use some tape to patch those holes. I don't know how they got there.
TMI: I had to poop most of the day, but the bathrooms were not open in town, and the first Privy I found was at mile 21. The Privy was a 3.5 star mouldering privy. Lost points for a door that stuck to the wood planks and wouldn't close.
Life is camping on the AT with my son, and it is great!
PS Happy Birthday Troy D. And today would have been my grandmothers 98th birthday.
Sent from my iPhone
BevoHi Appalachian Trail Journal
Are we there yet?
Just a mile.... mile and a half...
You can e-mail me at BevoHi@jedi.net to send words of encouragement or with questions.
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