Day 102: mile 1424.4 to mile 1440.4

7.26.18. 16 miles.

I woke up earlier than my alarm this morning, around 5:45 just like yesterday. However, this morning my tummy felt fine and I had a normal bowel movement. Score! I had plenty of time before the Trail Angel, Jeanine, was going to pick me up so I slowly got ready and ate an interesting breakfast of pasta salad and whole milk before getting dressed and packing my bag. I laid in bed the rest of the time, watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians. If there’s anything to motivate me to get back on trail, it’s watching this show first thing in the morning.

A little after 8, Jeanine texted me that she was here and I jumped up, ready to go! It took us a little while to drive bc there was road construction, but it was ok bc we got to chat. She is so lovely, and truly an angel! I suspect we could have talked for hours more, but I needed to get hiking! It was so nice of her to drop me off practically where I got sick on Saturday. There was a gravel road about 0.3 north from the bridge I got to above Rock Creek, so I backtracked to the bridge and turned around to continue north. Some may say I’m crazy, but I couldn’t not hike that small bit I missed, even if it was just 0.3 miles.

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The big climb of the day actually wasn’t bad at all. The grade was pretty gradual, and thankfully, even though it was super smoky, the smoke actually blocked the sun enough to keep it cooler out. I was happy it didn’t feel like 100 degrees. There was water about every 4-5 miles on the hike today, so I stopped at each source to take a break and fill up. I forgot to start cold soaking my lunch at the first water source, so I did it right before the next one with leftover water, then refilled at the stream. My lunch wasn’t ready though until the 3rd water source, which I didn’t get to until 3ish. I’m starting to get a little sick of my food, so this took almost 1 hour to eat. I have to eat though bc I need the calories.

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I had originally intended on going further tonight, but the next water, which was necessary, was another 0.2 off trail, and I was feeling really beat from the day, so I just decided to camp near the trail junction to the water. It was nice too bc it was 6 pm, so I had time to get things sorted out, to air myself out & cool down before getting right into bed, and just relax. I’m happy that I listened to my body instead of trying to push it harder, just to set up “better” for tomorrow. Now I get to go to bed early and wake up super early to start hiking when it’s actually cooler out.

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I’m also in a totally new group of people! Have never seen any of these guys, so it’s weird being in a new bubble. Everyone has been super nice though, as usual.

 possibly the dirtiest I’ve ever been

possibly the dirtiest I’ve ever been