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July 11, 1983 Monday (1113.1 mtg) From Gonzo!s Appalachian Trail journal

This morning I had only one bag of oatmeal and some sprouts I had gotten a few days ago from John. I ate the sprouts on bread with peanut butter. Soon after beginning the day I passed by Antietam Shelter and then lost track of the blazes. The shelter was located in an area called Old Forge Park. I noticed some guys nearby who were cutting down some trees so I decided to ask where the trail was. I knew it had been relocated along this section, and I was seeing greyed out blazes, and knew I was on the old route. They assured me that the trail was up the road, so I thanked them and followed the road a bit. Thinking I should have seen the trail by now, the road split into two at a "y", I retraced my steps back to the men and asked again. They said that if I kept going on that road I would find a sign. I never really trust locals giving directions, but I went back and eventually found the sign. Once back on the trail I ran into some hikers and knew I was on the right track after that.

I took a short side trip to an area known as Chimney Rocks, but I was not impressed with the view. It was panoramic, but nothing really breathtaking. Stopped for a drink at Raccoon Run Shelters, and then continued on for another couple of miles to reach Calcedonia State Park where a grocery store was supposed to be located directly along the trail. This turned out to be not true; however, there was a concession stand and a public pool tempting me to cool off in the afternoon heat. The vendors were asking $1.75 for a cheeseburger, and $.75 for fries. The pool required $1.00 for a swim. I decided to pass up this opportunity and moved on to Birch Run Shelters. The miles in this area were either shorter than most, or the terrain was conducive to easy passage as I traveled the nine miles to the shelters in less than three hours! Over three miles per hour. Now that is what I call hiking! After twenty-five miles I arrived at the shelter and took the rest of the afternoon to relax and bring my journal up to date. I was about five days behind. I soaked my feet in the cool stream in front of the shelters, and whipped up a large supper of Lipton's sour cream 'n chives noodles and sauce with two bags of ramen noodles thrown in for extra bulk. I also added some cheese that I had received from Linda back at Pen Mar Park. I began seeing some new sights while in Pennsylvania today including huge ant mounds with basal diameters of about three feet, and white rhododendron with green splashed in the center. Another interesting change was the use of twin log cabin type shelters painted black and white rather than just one shelter as usual. I gathered a little wood to help keep me occupied, expecting to have a fire later. Spent the night by myself for the second time on the trip in 58 days if I don't count the early morning drop off on the trail in the Shenandoah's.

Gonzo! Appalachian Trail Journals ©1983

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