With only ten miles to go to Daleville, VA, I slept in and was the last person to leave the campsite. Not surprisingly, I didn’t see another thru-hiker the entire day. I’m beginning to think that the A.T. is designed to provide a nice, easy trail to town so that hikers aren’t too tired to spend money. Today was no exception. Though there are a few rocky sections, for the most part, the trail was smooth with very little elevation change.
In addition to being on an easy trail, today’s hike also had multiple spots that provided really nice views of the valley below. Along the ridge line, there were also some pretty impressive rock formations. Here is a selection of pictures from some of the better spots.
Just prior to beginning the descent into Daleville, the trail once again passes under high tension power lines. This is the second time on my hike that I could hear the hum and crackle of millions of volts of electricity, and it is a bit uncomfortable to be so near the source of all that power. Soon, however, I put some distance between me and the electrical needs of modern civilization, and began my descent towards town.
Daleville is perhaps the most convenient trail town I have encountered to date. The trail comes out of the woods and crosses the very busy US Highway 220, and all of that traffic was somewhat of a shock to the senses. Not 100 yards to the right is the Howard Johnson (where I’m staying), and directly across the street is a Super 8 Motel. To the left, less than a ten minute walk away, is a large shopping center with several restaurants, a Kroger grocery store, a full service outfitter, and several other services.
After walking down to the outfitters to retrieve my resupply package, I returned to the HoJo to start my chores. There is a small laundry facility on site, so while my stinky clothes were washing, I took a much needed shower. When those items on my checklist were complete, I turned to the most important item. Eating! So I walked back to the shopping center and went to a restaurant, that is highly regarded by hikers, called Three Li’l Pigs Barbecue. Upon completion of my dinner sized Caesar Salad, I made quick work of a plate of pulled pork and ribs, washed down with a decent local craft beer.
In an attempt to avoid a food coma, I walked around the shopping center, and discovered Boo Boo and the British Invasion hanging out at a coffee shop. They had decided to wait a while for the temperature to drop, and then hike 5 miles to the next shelter on the A.T. After visiting with them for a while, I bid them happy trails and walked back to the motel.
I was sorry that Boo Boo was going ahead, but later this evening I got a text from him that he was sick and was returning to town. I asked him if he needed any help, and he told me that he would let me know. I just heard from him that he is back in town. I’ll find out the rest of the story tomorrow.