I woke up today and just wanted to lay there. My mood was pretty foul today. But I had some breakfast and put on my gear even though I did not want to on a surfical level. Rain was in the forecast and it was raining in the morning already.
I went to the grocery store and packed up a new supply of trail food and I started hiking on the AT. I put my headphones on and listened to some music while hiking, something I have done maybe four other times. I prefer nature usually. My deep seated drive got me going today.
I chalk up my mood to lack of calories and lots of exertion and how it all interacts with the body as a whole. I still love being out here and will keep going. This stage is like being at mile 20 in a marathon or like 2 a.m. in a 24 hour run. It is weird. it is the hardest spot to be in a race, but the spot I most truly love for some reason. This is where a strong mental game comes into play and knowing how to navigate mentally. Long distance running experiences are totally helping me on the trail. Still a long way to go.
Early into the hike ran into a guy just starting out for a week long hike going the wrong way. Got him turned around and going in the right direction. He had no trail name, but a person I was hiking with named him U Turn and now he has a name. He is from Boston. Nice guy. We taught the guy how to navigate the trail and he likes his name.
As I hiked I thought about my goals, my supporters and reasons for being out here and what I want and need. I got into a good space. Life out here is about adapting and meeting any challenge that comes up. The trail is physical for sure, but even more mental. As I hiked more, I started to enjoy the day a lot, the hike and amazing beauty around me and was glad for everything I experienced today in my head and on trail.
I ran into two different trail magics. One was a cooler of beer. The second was a guy from Maine giving out beer, fresh fruit. snacks and dehydrated meals. I had some fruit and beverages. It was so nice of the trail angels.
There was a lot of going up today and some nice views. I hiked about 17 miles to get to the Trapper John Shelter area, where I pitched my tent. Had dinner with other hikers and ran into friends from a week back. Fun to eat and chat before bed. The skies started to clear a little before dinner.
I am a firm believer that the trail gives you what you need, when you need it. It always does. It is remarkable.