Bland, VA to Pearisburg, VA
I’m becoming less concerned with miles and more concerned with listening to my body and intuition. The trail phrase “hike your own hike” has been my slogan lately. The freedom of stoping and relaxing by a river all day or going into town or staying at random hostels without worrying about other agendas is nice! I feel like a lot of hikers treat the trail like a race and just blow by all the beauty in order to gain miles, compete with each other and keep up with friends. Nothing is wrong with that, but I’ve also noticed hikers that take their time, fully appreciate everything they encounter and take in all the beautiful surroundings. I learn more and more each day out here and have always kinda had a philosophy in-between the mile minded and enjoyment minded and it has caused me a little stress sometimes. I respect the wisdom of the hikers that just flow up and down the trial at their own pace and always have a smile on their face, way more than the ultralight, cocky speed hikers that only talk miles, gear and calories. I’m now more devoted than ever to taking my time and fully enjoying the trail experience without the stress of a schedule or plan.
On the bridge crossing the Laurel Creek, there was a sign posted about a hostel called Fort Bastian in Bastian, VA. I called the number for the hostel and spoke to “TruBrit” who is the owner. It turns out the hostel is his Akido dojo. TruBrit picks hikers up and allows them to stay in his dojo for a five dollar charge. It was awesome the Fort Bastian Dojo had a surround sound movie theater and was right next door to an all you can eat pizza buffet. We watched three movies Wall-e, Lord of the Rings, and Planet of the Apes, and enjoyed TruBrits hospitality.
Sunset coming through my tent.
Gandalf and I decided to night hike 14 miles to reach an Amish store called Natures Way by morning to get ice cream and Amish cheese. When we got to VA 606 the store was 5 miles down hill, so we decided to go to Trent’s Grocery only half a mile away to get breakfast and try to hitch a ride down to Natures Way. The breakfast at Trent’s was good, but none of the locals would give us a ride to the Amish store. One guy was very hateful towards the Amish, saying ” are you Amish? are you Amish, boy?…No then stay away from them!” ” they don’t pay taxes” “they have weird beliefs”…blah,blah,blah. I headed back out on trail before trouble started and chilled by a stream all day.
The stream I relaxed by all day after night hiking 14 miles.
Woke up and got a late start, hiked 12 miles to Woods Hole Hostel, described in the A.T. Guide as “a slice of heaven, not to be missed.” Woods Hole is definitely a very hospitable, great place to stop and spend the night.
Woke up and had a great breakfast at Woods Hole then hiked 10 miles into Pearisburg, VA and split a room with Poncho, Great Dane, and Jabs.
Poncho helping out serving breakfast plates. Neville made the breakfast cherry pie, peach cobbler, with yogurt, scrambled eggs with veggies and a banana it was delicious! The ingredients were fresh, organically grown at the hostel or from a local Amish farm.