Sunday, July 29, 2007

Hike: Sassafras Gap Shelter

5/4/98--Sassafras Gap Shelter, 141.0 4:45 pm

Shortest day yet--not quite 7 miles, almost all uphill. The plan had been to push on and tent at Locust Cove Gap, doing yet another 10-12 miles, but by the time I got here and finished lunch and it finished raining (for the moment, at least) it was after 4 so I'm going to pull my first 15-mile day tomorrow, instead. I'm actually tired enough to go to sleep right now. It may just be from lack of stimulus. I'm not alone--another hiker is here who's been on the Bartram Trail and is taking the AT back to his car on Wayah Bald--but the Fantastic 4 pushed on the 9 miles to Brown Fork and Cheerios is tenting somewhere along the way, so comparatively speaking, this is a desert island, and I feel like collapsing into the solitude.

I did a return trip to the NOC this morning, which explains the lateness of the hour. The prospect of putting my pack on again was just too much. For the past few days, from at least before Franklin, my left rhomboids--muscles that attach the shoulder blade to the spine--went into spasm the moment I put the thing on and stayed in serious pain until I took it off. It's certainly been contributing to my crankiness and discouragement. Well. The staff at the NOC came through again, giving me almost opposite advice from what I got at Walasi-Yi, but this seems to have done it. There was actually space behind my shoulders. Hooray!

Well, there's dinner to eat in a couple of hours, but I may try to nap in the meantime. --MC

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