Sunday, March 3, 2013

Routine is setting in ....

Drive in, drive out, to starting point, to pickup point and all points in between. At least I am not having to set up camp in between yet. It is simply tooooo cold - brrrr. When driving the backroads to the point where the AT crosses an accessable road one would think that we are somewhere in Alaska or the backwoods but turn a corner, and you are in the middle of civilization. 
You are really never too far from it and yet you feel isolated from all the trappings, hustle and bustle, and noise; that is until you come to an access point and there are cars parked everywhere. 
This being a weekend, there are many section hikers out and about (these are hikers that go out for a specific amount of time or a specific part of the trail). I saw no one waiting in the car like I did today.

The last couple of days Danny has hiked in 30-32 degree weather 
 notice the temperature

 bundled to the max
 with mild flurries occasionally. He dresses warm, takes enough to eat and more importantly, to drink. He has gone through fields after fields of harvested corn that line the trail as well as nude tree forests - no leaves, no green as yet. 
The trail is marked with white hash marks painted on the trees but that hasn't stopped him from loosing the trail a couple of times. He carries a Spot - wonderful thing that - and I can track him on the computer. The best thing about it is that it tells me when he is getting close to the area that I am to pick him up at and I can head on out. But really, it is a safety thing - should he not arrive at the designated spot, or should he fall and hurt himself, we have knowledge of where he is or last moved from. Gives me much peace of mind.

I am really getting to see this part of America. It is beautiful, but then all parts have their own beauty. I made the comment today that we might have to stay out here for a few months just to tour and get to know it. We are but a short distance at any given time from historical, national and state parks that offer a world of information and outdoor activities. The streams are running, giving off their fresh smell as well as their tinkling or rushing water sounds as they rush over the rocks and fallen trees. 

A couple of ponderings: why all the candles in the windows and why the iron stars on the side of the buildings?

And tomorrow, Danny starts a more strenuous part of the hike - lots of up and downhills in the mountains of southern Pennsylvania leading us closer and closer to Maryland - our first state change.