4/20/18 Day 271 AT Day 31: Magical trail to Laurel Falls to Vanderventer Shelter

Miles: 20 Steps: 41,916 Elevation Gain: 5,566 feet Faith in Humanity: Amazing Trail magic from Luke Trailwalker, someone I met on the AT before in 2015! Awesome Ahh, lost a day in the journal somehow, got a bit behind. That’s ok, I’ve been super consistent overall with wringing journals! The trail was magical today. Beautiful trail, waterfalls, a big climb, trail Magic, and sleeping alone in a shelter! A bit sad to leave Bob Peoples’ place this morning. What a great guy! The day of volunteer really has inspired me to do more. Now comes the tough part: following through! Trail magic had a big table set up and they made tasty sandwiches and had a huge assortment of cookies, honey buns, snickers bars, oranges, bananas, and good times. So cool to run into someone I loosely hiked with in 2015 when I walked 500+/- on the AT (NH and Maine!). What a small and beautiful world! Chatted with some other hikers who had been living in Saudi Arabia working as teachers for a few years prior to the trail. Watauga Lake and dam was beautiful hiking, then the trail followed an incredible riding with great views of the lake. The shelter I slept in was directly on the ridge with great views. Crazy to be the only one sleeping at the shelter with two guys renting. Where’d everybody go? Oh well, I’m sure I’ll see lots of hikers soon enough!

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