What is this blog about?

My name is Lori. In August, 2014, I plan to hike the Camino de Santiago trail. Feel free to join me on my adventure by following me on this blog.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

What a great week of hiking it has been! We have passed the 800 mile mark, and it feels good. Since I took some time off in Damascus for trail days, it seems that I have entered a different bubble of hikers. I have met some new great friends and been reunited with others. Upon McAfee knob, I was reunited with Incline, who I first met at the Aquone cabin hostel. Last time I saw him, he was speeding past in the Smokeys. He is very fast, but had to take some time off to be with family. Later that day, I was reunited with Longstride and Silvergirl. It was so great to see them and camp with them again!

I made a new friend, called 4-Trees. He is a retired GM executive, and knows a lot about my favorite topic-travel. He invited me one night to go with him to a friends home. They did not live far from the trail, and we're anxious to give shelter to some hikers. It was great. I got a private room and shower, and not only did they prepare dinner, but they had a vegetarian plate made up for me once I got out of the shower. It was Memorial day weekend, and they had other family and friends at the home as well. I felt as welcome as if I were at grandmas house.

Their home is a beautiful cabin that they built themselves from a "log home kit" It was very cute! Bev and Bey live in the home. The picture also shows their son, Keith and his wife, who drove us back to the trail the next morning after making a yummy breakfast. What amazing hospitality!

I also came across my dear Snail and Turtle. They have had a tough time lately as Snail has been battling stomach illnesses, and even been in the hospital. I almost cried when I saw them, I was so happy. They had skipped ahead a little to catch up and just happened to be dropped off at a road me Voltron, and 4-trees were taking a break. They both looked very well, but I could tell that Snail was still feeling weak. The next morning, we found Turtle with a new turtle friend.

After I took this picture, I got ahead of them, and it turns out that it would be the last time I would see them on trail. I hiked to a shelter beyond where they went, and that night they decided it was their last. They sent a message for us with Hopalong. The next day, I would have liked to get off trail to spend some time with them, but they were already on their way to the airport. I will sure miss them, and they will always be dear to me. Hopefully we will reunite someday in another place.

We had some long climbs this week. We also came through some interesting terrain. Brown mountain is an interesting place. It is a historical location where freed slaves had a settlement. They lived in stone buildings and did farming. How difficult it would be to farm in this area. There is still some evidence of a stone wall, and we saw some areas that could have previously been part of a stone structure

I didn't see any mysterious lights, but I know I had the best nights sleep along the creek on Brown Mountain. I found this little bit of interesting info on the interwebs:

The Brown Mountain Lights
It has baffled pioneers and scientists alike. The old-timers would shake their heads and say that there was a spell on Brown Mountain. The old hunters told stories of how their dogs would come whimpering back whenever they got to a certain spot on the mountain. The Brown Mountain lights are balls of fire that pop up over Brown Mountain. Fall is considered the best time to see the lights and Wiseman's View is one of the favorite spots to come and watch for these mysterious lights. As you look towards Brown Mountain a light will pop up on the horizon. It will shine steadily for a few seconds. Then it will rise into the air and waver and then wink out.

The phenomenon first gained national attention in 1913 when the U.S. Geological Survey became interested in the mystery and sent scientists to study what the cause of them might be.
Over the years there have been many scientific theories, but the mystery still remains unsolved. One legend has it that the light is the soul of an Indian maiden searching for her brave warrior killed in a bloody battle. Another legend was made famous by Scott Wiseman in his song about the Brown Mountain Light.

Today, I made it to the Dutch Haus B&B. Earl and Lois Arnold run the house with the help of their niece, Hannah. It's a beautiful, comfortable home. I met up with my ol' pal, Sparky here. It's always great to see him! He stayed last night and is still a couple days hiking in front of me. He left the house this evening when his brothers got here. Steve and David have met Sparky several times along the trail, helping with slackpacking, and just enjoying each others company. I have had the pleasure of meeting up with them several times as well, so it was great to see them too! They have been awesome trail angels!

I plan to stay a second night here. I will slackpack tomorrow and come back here after hiking. I feel a little twinge in my back today, maybe I slept funny last night. Carrying less on my back isn't a bad idea for a day, and I will still be on my planned schedule.
Hannah, from the B&B is going to hike with me.

I got word last night that Chris comes to visit in 6 days, and I am so excited!
People talk a lot about the "Virginia blues". I think Virginia has been beautiful, but I have to admit, I have gone through a bit of the blues. I think it has more to deal with the fact that I have been hiking for over two months now. I miss my family, my dog, and my Chris! The hiker family reunions this week, and the adopted family holiday cookout really helped my blues just when I needed it. Chris coming to visit is now just what the Dr. ordered.

Miles hiked: 826.5
Miles to go: 1357.7


  1. Wow. Another great writeup. Thanks for keeping up updated. All of your friends down here in Florida are so proud of you. Keep it up!

  2. Way to go Lori..way to go. Remember Maine is just over that next hill.

  3. Eight hundred miles is amazing, Lori. Keep up the good work.

  4. Congratulations on passing up 800 miles! We miss you too! But I am so grateful for modern technology to be able to communicate with blogs, cell phones -talking and texting! We went to a movie today that was filmed in Maine! It will be beautiful! Then we can plan a family reunion!!!, with Chris of course! Love You Tons!

  5. You are such an amazing girl! I am so beyond proud of you , but I miss you terribly. I hope you write a book about your experiences because you have quite a talent. The fun thing is that your write the way you talk and I can just hear you telling your stories. Keep up the good work, Lori,and take good care. I love you. ♥

  6. We miss the trail & everyone we met along it. To bad about Turtle & Snail. But good to hear that everyone else is doing well. Send along our regards to Sparky, Voltron, Longstride & Silvergirl. Look forward to seeing you in New Hampshire. Zigzag

  7. Lori, I have enjoyed reading your blog, keep up the good writing. I was glad you didn't let the bear incident knock you off the trail.

    I wanted to let you know that the song about the Brown Mountain Lights is actually about Brown Mountain in North Carolina near Boone. The Brown Mountain lights are easily visible from the Blue Ridge Parkway.