No Images from
this date

What You

Other Images

Contact Gonzo!


June 29 , 1981 Monday From Gonzo!s Appalachian Trail journal

Got up early -5:30 am. Got everything ready, ate only one Pop - Tart, and walked four miles to the Village Truck Stop restaurant. There I ate 3 pancakes for breakfast complemented with two pieces of toast that I scrounged from a nearby table after the occupants had left, but before the waitress took away their plates. My sweet tooth and need for calories led me to confiscate four individual serving tubs of Kraft syrup to pour on my breakfasts of grits. I hung out at the restaurant while Peter and Bob Stoker went into Atkins. Peter had been having trouble with his Jansport pack frame for several days now, and was expecting a new pack frame sent to him by the company. The side hip belt supports had broken, he called the company and they agreed to send him a new frame to the Atkins Post Office. The frame had not arrived yet so he filled out the card necessary to have it forwarded. He mailed a letter to Connie for me, and also purchased two boxes of Pop-Tarts, some peanut butter, and bread for me at the local grocer. He continued on down the trail, but I stayed waiting for Bob to get back – I was watching his pack while he was gone. When he returned, I decided to eat a hamburger, but Bob pushed on. I quickly finished the burger, and took off myself.

At the third gate, crossing a fence, the trail was obscure as to where it went. Taking a respite for a bit, I heeded mother nature’s call and afterwards consulted the guide book. Not long afterwards, I talked to a guy on a tractor in the process of mowing the side of a hill. He told me it was his land we were on, so I thanked him for letting the trail pass thru it. He said another guy had just passed recently. I figured it was Bob. I continued on and when I got to a spot where brown was painted over white blazes, I stopped and read the old guidebook lent to me by Peter. I figured it was the old AT, but (I think it actually was) I pushed on because I had heard it was blue-blazed. I came to an intersection later, only to find Peter washing his socks in the creek. Neither one of us knew where Bob was. He was somewhere in between us, but suddenly gone now. We had reached the point in the trail where I had decided to hike the old AT. Peter took off his way, and I mine. Uphill! Finally the 1st shelter! Big Walker Mt. Shelter. The fire tower was gone and the spring dry. I decided to push on to Monster Rock shelter even though it was already 3:00pm – and supposedly nine miles to get there. The trail was nice ridge walking, but beginning to become over-grown with nettles and berries since no one was actually supposed to be using or maintaining that section any longer. My legs became scratched as I moved quickly through the brush. I managed to reach the shelter at 5:30! Unbelievable! Nine miles in two and a half hours! Inspired with my progress, I decided to go another mile farther to where a restaurant was supposed to be. It was more like a gift shop, but had a small refreshment stand. Had a chilli dog, butter pecan pie and ice cream, and lots of cool water. In the change that I received, I found a penny with a sticker on it that showed an acorn and the words “Big Walker Mountain”.

Didn’t really know where I wanted to stay, so I waited until 7:00 pm before moving up the road to the Big Bend Picnic area where campers are not allowed. With the extra 3.75 miles, I covered a grand total of 24 miles! New Record. Have not yet found the spring said to be here. I will look in the morning after a hopefully restful sleep. Goodnight. ZZZZ

Gonzo! Appalachian Trail Journals ©1981