15 April 2021. Day 18. 9.2 Miles + 213.1 = 222.3 Miles. Lewis Campground to Big Meadows Campground. The Frigid Nights Return

Nothing Like Coffee on a Cold Morning: Adventure, Karhop and Action

Yesterday’s hike was nothing but wet. It rained all the way throughout the night as the temperature slowly dropped. A wind came and went although most of it seemed to wait until we got up to make things more comfortable for us. Right! Luckily Trail Angel Karhop was in camp and he made fresh roasted coffee for us. Karhop is from Indiana but coincidentally he hiked the AT last year with a group of 5 men who dubbed themselves the AARP On the AT. One of them turned out to be one of Action and Adventure’s friends from Brevard, North Carolina. It’s a strangely small world.

08:35 YIBBA from Cumberland, Maryland

Almost as soon as we left camp we ran into YIBBA which is somehow short for Yabba Dabba Do. She is a retired paramedic from Cumberland, Maryland and is solo hiking the trails within the Shenandoah National Forest.

11:24 My Journey With Action and Adventure Continues

This being our second day we took turns taking the lead. It was one of those days that you realize that the temperature is dropping but the intermittent sun forced you to layer up or down your clothing depending on whether you were climbing or descending. High elevation points were normally places of rapid passage. They were the homes of the wind.

12:16. A Surprise Permanent Lot Near Meadow Mountain

At first I thought that the stones were cars parked on one of the Skyline Parking areas. We explored the cemetery for awhile and determined that it had to be the family cemetery of the family for whom the mountain was named.

12:36. Site of a Natural Spring that Probably Served the Family and now the Campground Ahead

With the temperature dropping we decided to stop at the next parkway wayside to resupply. My battery charger had committed suicide and I was in need of a replacement. Although the grill was closed we were able to get sandwiches.

At the side trail was the largest spring we’ve come upon . The water was coming out of the ground through a 5 or 6 inch pipe which had been inserted into the spring.

12:45. The Climb to the Wayside Store

The promise of hot coffee and supplies drew us into this extra 0.8 miles. It was worth it but cold!!!

13:21 Greenhorn of Montana and Roots of Virginia

Both of them had begun their through hike on 5 February from Amicaloa. In a couple of days Roots wife was going to pluck them off the trail for a couple of days for some R & R.

14:38. Action and Adventure Own the Shenandoah Valley

By this time we were sure of it….. we were going to stop and get our tents up well before the sun began thinking about going down. With the wind and massive drop in temperature it was going to be wicked. My gloves went back on…. my wool long sleeve shirt went on…. my hat went on all before we were done with the hike.

14:54 Action Finds Some Trail Angel Soft Drinks

And yes we took two of them. Arrival in the camp allowed us to hang my tent, ground cover, rain fly and sleeping bag out to dry. With the cold wind it didn’t take long. Supper cooked with frozen hands I found myself in my tent typing this with the wind flapping the sides of the tent.

Next to our camp area is a pile of bear scat. They obviously come roaming into the tent area once everyone is quiet. On this night a little extra effort was made to secure every bit of our food in the bear box. After all…… we do want the ability tomorrow to hike on.

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