Als ich wisse das Morgen der Erde enden wuerde, immernoch wurd ich mein Apfelbaum pflanzen.

Even if I knew the world would perish tomorrow, I would still plant my apple tree. - Martin Luther

"Factory work's easier on the back, and I don't mind it, understand, but a man becomes what he does. Got to watch that. That's why I keep at farmin' although the crops haven't ever throve. It's the doin' that's important." Madison Wheeler in Blue Highways by William Least Heat Moon

Saturday, June 20, 2015

0 - 18.8

My favorite way to let go of a busy school year is to head out away from everything.  This year I decided to hike the entire Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail (70 miles from start to finish).

I started the trip with a good friend from school.  We got rained on (a lot), but there's nothing like being out on the trail.

We started out at mile 0 at Ohiopyle State Park, and hiked the relatively steep section to the first shelter (6.5 miles) in a misty drizzle.  There was sun when we arrived, but we could hear thunder in the distance so we quickly did all of the in camp chores (filter water, gather wood, etc.) and then settled in for a relaxing evening of talk and enjoying the peacefulness of our surroundings.

We headed out early the next morning, knowing that we had 13 miles to cover, and that the first two were very steep (rise of 1200 feet).  We hiked through a mixture of drizzle and fog, intermixed with some sun, and several hard downpours.  So much for dry feet.

Despite the rain, the woods was magical.  The last mile and a half were pretty difficult.  I had gotten very chilled and all of my joints were aching.  Once we made it to the shelter, and I dried out and warmed up the evening was a pleasant one.  We were glad to be in the shelter instead of a tent as there were some very intense thunderstorms.  We stayed nice a cozy, and were glad that our fire building skills were such that we could start a fire with wood as wet as a sponge.

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