Outsideways was designed from the ground-up for people who want to remember the tiny details of their adventures
"When by mutation a new rose is born in a garden, all gardeners rejoice. They isolate the rose, tend it, foster it. But there is no gardener for men"
On occasion, I may spy my shadow and decant upon mine own uniformity. (Richard iii fans go fucking wild upon realizing how good that line was). The wind whipping around my robe, trekking poles resting like swords in a standard, the hood's exceptional ability to mask the shape of the head. It reminds me of the earth's ability to rebuke the advances of time despite its vastness. And so we find ourselves, more or less (give this one to me, we must sacrifice content for aesthetics), walking among the same rocks the furthest of our ancestors walked. I see the hardened nomadic people's forging there way across difficult terrain. For that was a necessary part of their life, and so they did. At least it's fun to imagine your shadow as a window into your spiritual ancestors of ol'. Idk try it next time you're walking a desert floor for hours at midday while carrying 2 days water.
My tunes: Next Best Western and Willin by Richard shindell My leap frog group: smoked 'em, obviously. If you've been paying attention to this very detailed, consistent blog, you knew that was all but certain. They prob eating my dust 8 miles back. Hope Annie takes the trail name I offered her, despite me running laps on their sorry behinds, or, whatever the 2600 mile long track with no loop version of that is
My top recommendations for future hot weather hikers so far that I either learned on trail or feel their effectiveness is understated by the community compared to other things. A few ppl have already quit and/or considered quiting
Dry your feet, socks, insoles, and shoes separately twice daily or hourly if needed
Silk sock liners accelerate the drying process and control moisture while hiking too
Hike commando, put on underwear later in day. This minimizes the potential for chaffing. Or wear a robe for maximum airflow, which has the same effect
Only have enough medicine and other such consumables to last half way to the next town (if its serious and you're past half way, carry on. If its not serious and you're not half way, turn back). Obviously doesn't apply to real medicines.
3 layers max. I regret bringing my serria base layers. If its cold, either hike or get in your sleeping quilt! What weather is really too cold for just a hiking shirt but too hot for a puffy? If you have an answer you need to toughen up brosef!
Ask other hikers about their blisters, injuries, and emotional turmoil - it helps them to vent and helps you to not forget how awesome your hike is going!
Day 4 - Midday Break. Check out this resting spot! That awesome campsite from last night? How was it you ask? Beauty aside, it was a terrible spot! Still were mice despite the firm wind tugging at my quilt and blowing icy breath into my headwrap all night. But think only if the stars and the lights of the distant city - how the desert below was like a bathtub filled with sand, with overturned pails of various sizes for mountains scattered about
My bags strap broke. Well, came undone, it had been broken for years, but my hack tie job recertified the scenario, both then and now.
A shout out to Kevin Boredman for Dj-ing my tunes. Yes, Jason, the new hop along album is good, get the playlist from Kevin.
My tune: Abc's of New York My podcast: an exploration of the commonality of religious ideas My favorite: this rest site
Well, I passed mile 300 and had a pretty tough night and next day. It was raining pretty hard in the morning when I started out from the Hemlock Hollow Hostel. Most of the hikers had decided to stick there because of bad weather on the way. It rained early in the morning but as the day wore on the rain let up and the wind dried my clothes. I as feeling pretty good despite the wind and went over Firescald Bald instead of taking the Bad Weather Bypass. That might not have been the wisest decision I have ever made! Between the rock scrambling and the howling winds on unprotected ridges—it was downright scary. The views were stunning though and I did take about two photos on the highest ridge. I was too terrified to linger very long. Luckily, I’m from NC and I definitely want to come back someday in safer weather.
All was going ok until I reached about mile 300 and the torrential downpours started up again. I got completely soaked again, so when I got to Jerry’s Cabin Shelter I threw up my TarpTent Notch in a hurry. Only expecting rain, I did not stake the tent out as much as I should have. Most of us were sleeping peacefully when we thought the rain stopped! LOL, but it had turned to quiet snow and I woke up with lots of condensation in my tent because there was two inches of icy snow weighing down the sides. Fortunately, I had dry clothes to change into but my sleeping gear and tent were soaked.
I got up without eating or filling water bottles and headed down the trail to warm up by hiking. That might be the fastest I have ever hiked! Most of you know I am a very slow hiker. My role model is John Muir who is quoted as suggesting that we “saunter!” But I flew that day and I am not kidding when I tell you that Laurel Hostel at mile 311 was a real lifesaver! Laurel Hostel is just 150 yards off the trail and a lot of us hikers filled the place up, shivering and wet, and grateful to be out of the snow. We got a ride into town to resupply at Walmart and we all ate Mexican food till we thought we would bust!
It was a tough night and day that ended well. The next night was spent in the Natures Inn Hostel where I waited for my son and his family to pick me up for a visit in Knoxville. It was so good to see family and especially my little granddaughter Anna who is now two. As I write this, I’m back at Natures Inn and will get back on the trail tomorrow. I’m eager to get back but today there was a high wind warning and I decided to be cautious.
I think I am still on track to make Trail Days in Damascus and I hope to meet a lot of new and old friends there. Until then, happy trails! Peace is green, Slosh
One of the conflict areas where I worked was Liberia-a country largely modeled after the USA. Rural areas suffer from a lack of clean water. As hikers we know how much work it is to collect our liter bottles of water—but imagine that you have to provide water for all uses for your extended family, elders, littles, the disabled and all. This arduous task usually falls to the women of the family. So I am supporting this project in Liberia. I know the groups involved and have met them personally in Liberia. Please read about the project for its interest when you have time. Donating is appreciated but not required. None of the funds go to my hike. Only to help the project get on its feet with an ultimate goal of self-suffficiency. GoFundMe.com/cleanwaterforliberia