This was our third day of our big push to get through this section. We did another 28 miles and the weather was amazing. About a quarter of the way through the hike we came across this mother bear and three of her sweet cubs. I think you can only see two of the cubs if you zoom in but the third one was playing behind the rock. They were so small and mom was keeping a real close eye on us so we slowly backed away down the trail.
This made my day for sure. I have been waiting for so long on this trip to see a bear. This sweet bear family made the wait worth it for sure. Astronaut, Jellyfish and I stopped for lunch along a ridge that had a little sun but it was still pretty brisk so we got back to hiking soon to warm back up. We were hiking fast today and the miles flew past with some amazing views of the valleys below.
We talked a lot today about how incredibly isolated we are this year on the trail. We’ve only seen one other hiker in the past two days! I don’t know what to make of it. It is a constant reminder of how broken everything is right now but we are also glad that we are so alone out here. We feel safe while being able to enjoy the outdoors. It’s that same problem we’ve been trying to work out since the virus broke. Is it okay for us to be able to enjoy this experience while so many are suffering? I have come to peace with it. It’s the right place for me now but that doesn’t mean that the anxiety is any less. That will only come when we everyone starts to heal.
Tomorrow is another big day of 28 miles and then we will need to resupply and get to sleep in a bed tomorrow night. After that, we will actually leave the Commonwealth of Virginia. She has owned us for so long and it will be a great milestone to get to Harpers Ferry and the famous “psychological half way point.” At 1,025 miles you are not quite 50 percent done but close enough to tell yourself that you are. All downhill from here, right?