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June 11, 1983 Saturday(1692.4 mtg) From Gonzo!s Appalachian Trail journal

The room we had chosen was on the second floor of "the Place" and came complete with one old mattress and a couple of three-inch thick foam pads. I don't remember exactly what we paid to stay there, but I am sure it was somewhere around five to seven dollars each at most. It also had a kitchen and refrigerator that could be used by all, so if you kept anything in the refrigerator, you had better mark it with your name. I had turned off the alarm and slept in this morning. I awoke naturally at six-thirty, got up and ate the second half of a box of Life cereal that I had started last night before going to bed. I love cold cereal and milk when I get into town! Wrote a letter to a friend, and around ten o'clock I placed a call to my Uncle Delray. Told him to tell my sister-in-law to send a package to Afton, Virginia and to fill up the fluids in my MGB which had a slow leak. After that I went to the pharmacy and bought a sympathy card to send to the Grotefendt's, and a sample of a muscle relaxant named Percagesic that someone had told me about along the trail during the last few days. Bopped over to the post office and sent all the post cards and letters, and on the way back to "The Place" I stopped to see if my boots were ready. The cobbler said no, but that they would be ready at noon. Back at the hostile, I talked with a couple of people from Holland who were just out hitchin' around. Studying the data book for a while, I decided that we should pass up stopping at the post office in Atkins, so about eleven o'clock I made another trip to the post office to send a letter to the post master in Atkins telling him to please forward to Bland, Va any mail I received there. Stopped and picked up my boots, packed up my stuff, and tried out the new foam insoles that I had gotten from Dennis the day before, and headed out of town.

There were two long climbs, one just out of Damascus up Feathercamp Ridge, and the other, a 1000 foot ascent in 1.5 miles up Straight Mountain. Jim really got pissed at his pack today because of a rash that was developing on his hips underneath his waistband. We made the 11.8 miles to the edge of a man-made pond in an "open" field listed in the guidebook as a good campsite. Took a little dip upon arriving at the pond, and set up for the night. I had planned on eating some of the bullfrogs that were bellowing at the ponds edge, but some weekenders with their kids decided to camp nearby on the ponds shoreline. These people were from Ohio. Brian, Kay, Graham and Molly kept us company with their many questions about the strange bearded hikers that they found beside them. We began telling our stories and hoped to become masters at weaving the trail story necessary to mesmerize and persuade folks to exchange this entertainment for part of their meal. In this case we were treated to hot dogs, orange juice and pickles. We settled in and dozed off as the bullfrogs serenaded us with great vigor for the remainder of the evening as if they had sensed their lives were spared by the party from Ohio.


Gonzo! Appalachian Trail Journals ©1983

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