4/24/18 Day 275 AT Day 35: AT and Creeper Trail back to Damascus, VA

Miles: 15.4 Steps: 31,664 Elevation Gain: 760 feet Faith in Humanity: Roy! Hooking up slack packing, hiking with me, place to stay, and great company. Thank you!!! Another great day! “Really, I just want to hear a big cacophony of laughter”. An excellent goal, Roy, really an excellent goal! So much fun slack packing today! We drove up to the AT on beautiful country pasture roads alongside a river and took off hiking. Roy hiked with me the first few miles to the shelter. We chatted up several happy hikers as they passed us headed North. Instead of taking the AT back to Damascus which I’ve done before, I decided to take the Virginia Creeper Trail: a beautiful rail to trail cycling and hiking trail following Laurel Creek, crossing it probably 30 times on the section I did. So beautiful!!! Very happy I took this incredibly scenic route. Small tangent: I’m surprised the Appalachian Trail governing bodies don’t encourage alternate routes. It’d spread out the hikers a little more and they’d get to enjoy some variety. The hike was fast! Flat and easy gravel trail meant 3.5mph or fastest hiking. The restaurant was closed so I didn’t even stop for a break. I took a quick shower and headed for Subway. I hung out for a LONG time there! Very long. Time to eat two footling subs, haha. I headed Back to Roy’s and we stayed up chatting until probably 10pm. I love Roy. He’s smart and funny and just a great guy. Thanks for your hospitality!!!!

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