Old Friends and New (Days 74-79)


All of the rain seemed to scare people off of the trail in central and northern Virginia, so it was getting a bit lonely.

It was really nice heading into Harpers Ferry and having people I know come out to the trail to meet and support me. My parents spent a week acting as trail angels and feeding me, and I was finally far enough north that friends could come visit me.

I was afraid that leaving Harpers Ferry I’d end up having a bit of culture shock or withdrawal as I went back to hiking by myself. I said goodbye to everyone and I hiked up to the next shelter.

I was the only one at shelter. I cooked my dinner and started settling in to bed, and still didn’t run into any other hikers. At around 8pm, I heard a noise, and 14 kids rolled into the shelter. They were a group that I’d seen a few nights before (one of the kids was wearing a purple top hat with a yellow ribbon around it and an American flag as a cape… He was pretty distinctive) and they were settling in at the shelter for the night.

Despite the large number of kids, they were surprisingly quiet and well behaved. A bunch of them settled in to a game of magic, while others wrote in their journals. I was incredibly amused because I hadn’t seen anyone play Magic in a long time!

Later, they started a campfire and cooked hot dogs over the fire and shared them with me. I chatted with them as they cooked and sang songs, and found out that they were from a local Quaker camp. All of them had been going to the camp since they were 9 yrs old, and the 10 day backpacking trip they were on was essentially their graduation from the camp.

Even though the folks I knew from home had headed out, I definitely wasn’t lonely.


4 thoughts on “Old Friends and New (Days 74-79)

  1. Haha Magic!! My friend Joanne and I used to “play” that with some of the freshman in the dorm… It’s in quotes because while they tried to explain, we just played what we wanted and they let us. *snickers*
    I’m glad you aren’t lonely!!


  2. Magic is having a renaissance. Card sales are higher than ever. ESPN is already talking about trying to bring ti back to ESPN2 (seriously)


  3. Patches:
    Chuckwagon’s dad here. Thought about you last weekend while in Harper’s Ferry. We met there last year on C’s birthday, and on Saturday, I was back completing the AT four state challenge inspired by C, with his old boy scout troop.
    Your blogging is fantastic! I’m an avid now second year follower! (I believe it’s in the same league as Teewinot, or Outermost House. I have your “Inhaler Physics” entry bookmarked.)
    Best of luck.


    • Thanks! The four state challenge… Someday I’ll have to try that. I don’t think I’ve ever hiked more than 28 miles in a day. It’s great to hear from you. I enjoy writing the blog. It often feels like I’m just sending it out into the void, so It’s really good to hear that there are people out there reading it and enjoying it.


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