16 April 2021. Day 19. 8.1 Miles + 222.3 Miles = 230.4 Miles. Big Meadows Campground to Skyline Lodge. Seeking Shelter From The Cold

08:07 What’s the Camping World Coming To?

Here’s a family that can bring every comfort of home with them. They might as well have set up in their back yard. Actually it’s quite cool.

08:11 Adventure Expresses Her Love of Extreme Cold

As soon as the tents were up last night we were hunkered down in them. The night was bitter cold with a strong wind that threatened to rip my rain fly off. In the middle of the night my hips got cold and I ended up wrapping my rain jacket around them which did the trick!

08:52. Defib the Frozen Statue

I awoke this morning to a symphony of zippers. The “need” must have hit just about everyone at the same time because I could tent zippers opening about the same time and footsteps heading to the toilets. Weirdly I didn’t hear many of them come back and I remained snugly in my sleeping bag envisioning everyone tenting crammed into the one toilet outhouse because it was heated.

08:58 The Early Morning View of the Shenandoah

As you can see the valley was beautiful this morning.

09:00 Adventure Takes in the View

0903. Action looks back me from the rocky trail

I followed behind for most of the day. We only had about eight miles to go to get to the Lodge and out of the upcoming cold.

09:46. Five Liter and his 50 Pound Pack

Five Liter related that he was getting quite a bit of harassment from his Florida hiking compatriots about the size of his pack. He was very familiar with Action and Adventures home in Brevard having traveled there with his wife from Atlanta.

He also was very familiar with Walhalla. He lit up when he heard the name. Decades ago Walhalla folks will remember when the federal government swooped in and raided Piedmont Quiltmaking. They rounded up every person who was illegal and processed them for return to their own country. Five Liter was a rookie immigration officer on that raid. He said that he had never seen anything like it. Many of the Walhalla population showed up to support the workers. They had never seen that kind of response. They were actually after management and felt badly about the workers being displaced. On the day they bused the illegal residents out of town the streets were lined by people supporting those being deported. I know Walhalla enough to know that not everyone was standing there with that point of view but Five Liters impression of attitudes about immigrants changed that day in Walhalla.

09:55 Action and Adventures 200th Mile

These 100 miles do not come easy a d definitely are a reason to celebrate.

10:19. Working Our Way Across Pennsylvania Type Rock

The hiking was often times tricky with the footing. I slowed in these areas making sure that I didn’t end up doing a sideways two step.

11:05. Kevin: “But I’m Not a Through Hiker”

We didn’t care…… he was hiking from Harpers Ferry to Damascus. He had a pile of stories and help with directions. Years ago he and his brother had attempted to hike the Smokies together. He said that it left his brother scarred and he has never hiked again. Kevin, on the other hand came back in 2005 and ended up summiting Katahdin.

11:43. We were approaching Skyline Lodge

The upcoming Spring could be seen coming up from the valley to the mountains. To make that clear we could see it but we sure couldn’t feel it on this day.

13:52 Whoda Thunk: Defib and Betty White

Months ago while day hiking Wesser Bald near home we came upon Betty White through hiking. We jokingly said that we may end up meeting again. He says that his wife named him because he was complaining about the trail. He had lost enough weight that I didn’t recognize him but he heard “Defib” in conversation and reintroduced himself. Now he’s hiking with a group doing 27 miles a day. He obviously now has his trail legs.

13:56 Skyline Lodge: Home for the night

15:26 We are Thankful to be Out of the Cold

Tomorrow will be soon enough to hike on.

Pictures from the last few days

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