Florida-part 2

The water was from open hydrants everywhere

After leaving WFC, I went into Panama City and Callaway. The water had just been cleared to drink and some areas have electricity. The damage from fallen trees is EVERYWHERE.

Many businesses are open for limited daytime hours, but so many people are without transportation. I spent most of my time buying gas cans and filling them for those with generators. I met an older man who let me camp in his backyard which had just been cleared of downed trees. He assured me there were no more to fall on me!

Kathy lost her home, her car and was told her business had to go because the owner wants to bulldoze the building. She had no place to store anything so she was walking away from it. I gave her my jambalaya that Tracy packed for me and a hand full of cash. I wanted to tell her it would be ok, but easier said than done. And her smile let me know she thought the same thing.

Every road is lined with cut trees
Every corner a pile of metal

I met people with nothing helping other people with nothing. I’ll be going back on Saturday to help a couple move a trailer of belongings to Pascagoula. Starting a new life.

It will take many years for the trees to come back and almost as many for these people to rebuild. But they do it!

I thank all of you that lined my pockets and I assure you there were many tears and smiles from those on the receiving end. And from myself. Thank you.

As always,

Digdeep

Colorado

If there is one thing I miss about Colorado (besides family), it’s Autumn. So my fast and furious few days were all about family and the hills. And of course the Bronco game tomorrow night!

My mother and I drove up to the Elk Festival in Estes Park. Hundreds of elk come into the area during mating season. Not uncommon to see them lounging in front yards, and at times you can hear the males bugling.

The ride up to the park was beautiful. The aspens have all started changing and will soon be covered in snow.

Today was a day hike with my daughter and grandson. Can I just say high altitude is no joke! Thought I was going to pass out or better yet..die!!

And tomorrow eve we’ll all be gathered, wearing our orange and blue, and screaming at the television.

Go Broncos!

Digdeep

Bittersweet

Storm that came in on the first day!

I’m home safe and sound and ready for a nap! After a short hike out of the woods, I hopped in the truck and started the long drive home. The first 700 miles took me through all the places I’ve hiked, and it made me smile with memories.

Continue reading

Maryland

Finished! At least for now. I’m only a couple miles from my truck and will probably start driving home today. I managed to hike 60ish (can’t do the math right now) miles in the last four days. Sounds like a lot, but in this area 20 or 25 a day is doable if you’ve got your trail legs on. I feel like I’m just starting to get mine back and would continue, but logistics with one car are going to get difficult.

Ok, I know what you’re thinking…

HOW DISGUSTING IS THAT! I was just so hungry I didn’t realize that I had laid the tortilla on the dirty table! By the way, that burrito was delicious. And I was having lunch at Mount Vernon with the original Washington Monument just up the hill.

The stairs to the top were worse than that section of the trail, but the view was worth it.

The night before I spent the night at Annapolis Rocks and it turned out to be my favorite night. Beautiful weather, beautiful sites and fireflies!

The next day I was taking a break and met a trail maintenance volunteer. He was trying to clear a fallen tree from a side path and warned me about one up ahead. A dead tree had fallen, but was hung up on the tiniest dead branch of another tree. There was a hiker killed by a falling tree in the area just a couple months ago. You better believe I ran under it as a fast as I could! And then, not an hour later, I hear a weird loud whine, turn and see a giant tree split and crash to the ground. It hit so hard that leaves, dirt and rocks went flying.

When Bison took her faceplant on the rocks, it was because we had to leave the trail to get around a fallen tree. I came across several on this trip. And I know in a previous post, I mentioned that bears do shit in the woods. Well, I can also say, if a tree falls in the woods, you can definitely hear it!

Everyone was laughing about hanging food bags and nobody had seen a bear in WV or Maryland.

And just when you think you won’t see one…

Bear butt.

You see plenty of Timber rattlers. They are usually rather passive, but I didn’t want to test it. I’ve seen hikers in such a rush, that they’ve stepped over one and never saw it.

Time to pack up and wander out of here. More photos to come….

Boohoo

Digdeep

West Virginia

When hiking WV, you are skimming the border of WV/VA and I seldom knew which state I was in.

We started in Harpers Ferry, WV and hiked south. Then went up to Maryland and hiked back to Harpers Ferry. I ended up in Harpers Ferry 3 times while trying to move my truck north, south and in between. It’s a beautiful little town full of history and the Shenandoah river converges with the Potomac at this point.

I also made my 1000 miles on the trail!

We bought the best rolls from a woman who called herself a “real coal miners daughter”. She showed us photos of her mama and granny. I’d have to say I’ve met the kindest people along the trail and I can’t wait to see what’s next!

Actually, Maryland is next! And at the rate I’m going, I might be writing up Maryland on the way home. Almost finished with this hike…I think.

Be kind, be happy!

Digdeep