Daily Miles: 13
Total Miles: 211
It was such a comfortable night of sleep last night. Once we put our earplugs in to block out the traffic below us, we all slept good.
We had just another ten minutes or so of climbing before we got up onto the rim. It was quite breezy and chilly on top, but we still stopped to admire the view from the top. The view definitely had an east coast look to it, with rolling mountains like what we have seen in the southern sections of the Appalachian Trail.
The rest of the day was pretty flat and easy walking. We stopped at the first water source (basically just a really big puddle) to fill up our bottles and do laundry. We had all been short on water this morning, so we drank a bunch of water there and then carried more than usual just to make sure we could drink as much as we wanted today.
We walked by a decent-sized man-made lake which was quite nice. There were multiple motor boats and kayaks on the water and several guys on the shore fishing. It seemed like it would be a nice place to hang out for awhile.
We continued on some mountain bike trails and ended up a trailhead where Brett and Melissa (along with their awesome dog, Sage) were waiting for us with treats…cold drinks, danishes, fruit and chips and salsa! Yum! It was great to see them again and to swap some stories of the MRT.
They were kind enough to drive us to the post office to pick up our packages and then to a cafe where we all had lunch. It is good to have a break from walking and to just be able to relax and chat with fun folks.
After lunch, they brought us back to the trail and we walked the route which brought us back to the same place where we had just eaten lunch. This time, we just got some ice cream, since it had been so hot walking on the road through town. We seemed to change the course of the day’s weather by buying ice cream, because by the time we were in the covered porch of the store eating, a big grey cloud came by and it started to rain.
We figured that the rain couldn’t continue since the rest of the sky looked fine. So when the rain let up momentarily, we put our packs back on and headed out. The rain started in again and seemed to keep a steady, light pace and we were close to putting on our ponchos.
We ended up going less than a mile more, since we had planned for an “on trail” Nero = restful afternoon. We set up camp and then the rain really kicked in. It seems like it wants to hang around for a bit, which is fine, since we are all protected. Surely by morning we’ll be back to blue skies.