Day 172 on the Appalachian Trail Miles Hiked to Date: 1864 Hiked yesterday: 7 Trail Miles, Miles left to hike: 319
First, to Laura P., my fellow BMX mom, Thank you, Thank you! for the great box of goodies you sent! It's soooo nice that you remembered all of us! I'll post pics of Chipmunk once she comes in and checks out her goodies!
We invited him into the camper which is beginning to look like a cross between a bachelor pad and a lazy college student's dorm room. Oh well, only another month or so of this, right? We ate donuts while Uke ate a candy apple and Chocolate Chip watched each of us in hopes of a chewing misstep. Soon, our little French Press had our morning coffee ready and we relaxed and talked trail.
We piled into the front bench seat of the cab and Chocolate Chip climbed up on the top of the bench and proceeded to give Uke a good "sniffing over". She is particularly interested in ears. Luckily, I had given Uke a few Q-tips that morning and he cleaned half the Grand Canyon out of his ears!
While we waited, we met Heartrock and his hiking partner, Tracker, both of whom recently completed the AT and have it found it hard to hitch a ride back to home from Maine. They said that once they were in street clothes, they had trouble hitchhiking. They thought that drivers probably weren't picking them up, especially when they were farther away from the trail, because they looked homeless. Here's a pic of Heartrock with his walking sticks which are adorned with items he picked up along the trail. #LEAVE NO TRACE.
Chipmunk came in around 6 pm, well before dark, and looked pretty tired. She gave us hugs and then settled into one of the picnic tables where all of us had gathered. We chatted for a while before we all decided to head into town when Chipmunk declared she was craving Chinese food. Papa Chip had spotted a Chinese buffet in town and we all agreed that would work. So, with that, Uke jumped in the truck with Papa Chip; Chipmunk and I squeezed into Mailman's truck with Whisper (so we could do girl talk) and we all drove into town.
We finished up, paid the bill and headed outside. Uke connected with Whisper and we told him we'd see him up at the Visitors Center. We drove up the mountain and found a good camp spot at the far end of the center, saved a parking spot next to us for Whisper and climbed into our bunks.
Just before Chipmunk fell asleep, she said, "I've only had about 3 hours with you guys and then I'm going back out there tomorrow." I nodded and waited to see if she'd suggest taking a zero the following day. After a while, she said, "I'm going to sleep. I love you guys." Papa Chip and I both said, "Love you, too. Good Night." And with that, we all settled into sleep; I recall Chocolate Chip snoring loudly just before I fell asleep.
If you enjoy reading the story of our adventure, and you’d like to send some “Trail Magic” to Chipmunk, click on the “Donate” button at the upper right corner of today’s blog post. Chipmunk maintains a twitter account: @openlymtngoat where a common hashtag is #GoChipmunk . She (or we) will try to answer any questions you may have about her hike and this family adventure.
Thanks again for all your support,
Mama Chip, Papa Chip, Chipmunk and her dog, Chocolate Chip
(Tammy, Jay, Neva and Coco)