My drive from Glasgow, VA to Standing Indian, North Carolina was really interesting. Highway 81 hugs the Appalachian Trail all through Virginia and so I was able to retrace my steps through all of those towns that seemed like huge milestones to me heading north. Franklin, Erwin, Hot Springs, Marion, Damascus. These spots brought back so many good memories. It was cold and rainy back then and it was great to see everything decked out in its summer green.
Standing Indian is where Chuck got his Trail name. I zeroed with those fun traveling nurses in Franklin before the coronavirus crisis set in. I stopped at Franklin for a few minutes before heading to meet Neil at the campground. This slow trip back has been a great way to spend some time processing the thru hike. It was just too big to me to just rush back home.
Today was Neil’s 44th birthday and it was fun to hang out with him to celebrate. We built a big fire and had Outdoor Herbivore meals together. They got hooked on these too and their children are loving the dehydrated dessert cobblers for breakfast. We spent most of the afternoon relaxing by the cold stream as the kids went tubing past. I had planned to spend another night but I am feeling the pull of home. I’m only two hours from Bryan and Chuck and I don’t think I can wait another day.