Date- March 10, 2020
Location- Dalton, GA
Elevation- 889 ft
Distance Traveled Today- 6.4 miles
Distance Traveled Total- 284.9 miles
Weather/Temp- Rain, fog, 60s
Pain level- Low
Wildlife encounters- Zero
Days without shower- 0
Days without laundry- 0
It was raining this morning, so we laid in the hammock until 10 am when it finally slowed down. My feet were still hurting, but not as bad as yesterday evening.
Recitation for Little Shiba
The first four miles of the day were all roller coaster ridge-walking in a light misting rain and heavy fog. Last year, I spent a good chunk of my hikes memorizing poetry that tickled my fancy. I hadn’t practiced any of them in a while, and took the opportunity to do so today. Katana was my captive audience of one. I was pleased to still be able to regurgitate around 20 poems accurately, without straining my memory too hard. I think Little Dog enjoyed it.
Nothing noteworthy happened during the walk; the last 2.5 miles into Dalton were on roads. I checked into the Howard Johnson upon our arrival and spent over an hour marinating in the hot shower. They didn’t have laundry here, so I washed everything in the tub and hung it to dry.
I haven’t left the hotel premises since I got here, and ordered pizza to the room… twice! I’m just gonna enjoy not being outside for the next 16 hours or so, that way I can enjoy it even more when I finally get back out there.
The forecast looks like rain for the foreseeable future. My feet definitely need a day off, but I’m not sure I’m going to give it to them. We have 65 miles left. That’s three hard-ish days or four moderate days. Since it will be raining, I sort of prefer more of a moderate push than a hard push. My feet will be soggy, therefore more susceptible to hot spots and pain. The next 25 miles are also road miles, so we’ll knock those out in a day and be left with 40 miles. The big question is… hike tomorrow or give the feet one more day to recover?
The only reason I mull the decision over is because I like the idea of finishing on the 14th (the same day we started). That will be exactly one month (30 days) to finish the trail, and my OCD sure loves round numbers. So if the 14th is to be achieved, we can do it in four days by hiking out tomorrow, or three days by taking a zero. I still don’t have an egress plan for when we finish in the middle of nowhere, but that’s half the excitement of finishing a trail.