Pennsylvania was a tough state. I had heard horror stories about the rocks and snakes for months. Because of this, it was actually not as bad as I expected. The first half of the state was, do I dare say, kind of easy. The last half did have some remarkable rock scrambles. In addition, there are tons of small pointy rocks that hurt your feet all day as you walk.
As far as snakes go, I got away with only running into one Rattlesnake in PA. (~cringe~) The biggest problem with hiking in PA was the lack of water. We had several days with 100° temps, and sometimes a 16 mile stretch without reliable water. We had to carry a gallon at a time. Luckily, Roboticus had her parents visiting, and they met us along the trail a few times to give us water, lemon aid, and watermelon. Toby and Lisa, you were lifesavers!
PA offered some restful places, and some not so restful places. I got to Duncannon excited to stay at the Doyle hotel. It is some what of an icon at 107 years old. It is known as a hiker friendly place, has a bar on the ground floor, and said to be haunted. I also heard it was pretty run down and a total fire hazard. How could I turn this excitement down?!? Turns out, staying at the Doyle cured my fascination with hole in the wall hiker joints. It was disgusting! The bar/restaurant was great, as was the people running the place. However the rooms were awful. There was only one communal bathroom for each floor, and the place was falling apart and covered with dirt and cobwebs. Somehow, it was a full house. With stinky hikers, of course! We were able to entertain ourselves, non the less. Those details will go unwritten, to protect the innocent.
A few days later, I made it into the town of Hamburg and split a very nice hotel sweet with Spiceman and Rhino. We got a big room with three beds, and some much needed rest.
In the tavern located in the hotel, we ran into a couple sets of parents who we had previously run into on the trail as they were doing some hiking with their kids.
Palmerton was the next town we stopped in. We also got some good rest there, in jail. The jailhouse hostel was quite comfortable. Although not so comfortable was the co-ed communal jailhouse style shower. Luckily, Spiceman watched the door for me so I could have a private shower. The hostel was never actually used as a jail, and it is a really great thing the city does for hikers. It's even free!
We have hiked in an unusually big group lately for being this far along the trail. It has been great though. This is the gang at one of the best campsites yet. Awesome view!