Saturday morning I woke up and Jojo, the campground owner told me to head over to the trailer café, breakfast was on her! I got a breakfast sandwich and the cook asked me is that all? I said maybe some hash browns too. That came out sharing a plate with eggs, toast and sausage in addition to my breakfast sandwich.
After I ate I headed over to the office where a few people were hanging out. I enjoyed a cup of coffee and shared the story of my walk. A woman, Judy asked if I had hiked Rim Rock on the way through here. I told her I had just rested there but not hiked the trail through. She told me that I had missed a beautiful area and she would drive me back there and pick me up if I wanted. I took her up on the offer.
Rim Rock was definitely beautiful. Reminded me a lot of Hocking Hills minus the waterfalls. After an hour she came back and scooped me up. I then packed up my things and headed out of camp.
I was headed to the Garden of the Gods. I reached the campground just as it began to rain but got my tent up before it got heavy. The rain shower didn't last too long and soon I was out of my tent and headed for the trail up the to the cliffs. It was just as the sun was beginning to set; the Garden of the Gods offered sweeping views of the forest. Standing up there watching the sunset, with the wind beating my shirt against my chest, my legs so weak on the edge, I didn't know if I could trust them. In that moment looking out onto the endless horizon, everything felt infinite. It was beautiful and breath taking. The view made the long walks along the farm roads worth it.
I hiked down from there and went back to the campground. I cooked up some dinner, made difficult by the heavy winds. I read my book in the little daylight remaining, then turned in for the night.
Sunday morning I began to pack up and as I was doing so a park ranger was driving through the campground. He saw that I did not have a proof of payment slip on my campsite. He asked if I had payed? I told him I had not, but was heading out and would do so on my way out. He said that I better do so now or he would write me a $130 ticket. I took the envelope filled it out put the receipt in the envelope and slipped it into the self pay bin without any money in it. Sorry not sorry.
I finished packing, then left and got on the trail. I passed through the town of Herod where I stopped to charge my phone. The trail in some places is very muddy. Torn up by horses, covered in horse poop. Without my trekking poles and with my shoes falling apart my march has slowed and is very difficult. It feels like every mile is two. I am trailed by aggressive gnats, fortunately however, no mosquitos. Brown and I are covered in ticks though.
The day was long and it got dark before I knew it. I found a small primitive campsite off the trail and decided to just stay there the night.
Monday morning I woke up and got moving. Not too far up the trail I came across an old church. The latest mailing was from 1982. I would like to have grabbed a picture but my phone died the night before. A little ways up the trail I came across a horse camp ground. It was unoccupied. I needed water and to charge my phone so I did. About forty five minutes later two people came through on horses and said "just helping yourself are you? ". I wanted to reply "it's the least you can do since I'm covered in mud and horse crap from you tearing up the trail". However, I responded with "I'm sorry, my phone died and I was weary about continuing on through the woods without it, in case of an emergency". They then asked where I was coming from and I told them about my walk. I said I was sorry for trespassing and began to grab my things. The man then said, "you might as well stay and get a full charge". Then they were off.
Further on the trail I slipped on a rock crossing Lusk Creek and fell hard on my wrist. My knee took a scraping, my face went in the water along with my cell phone. When it wouldn't turn back on, I was devastated. When it finally did but wouldn't recognize my memory card, I was even more so. All my pictures, lost. I was so upset. Eventually everything dried out and began working again, such a relief.
I pushed on and made it to Eddyville. Just before I got to town it began raining. I found a church and was going to set up outside but the doors were unlocked. I went in and and dried off a bit. I ate all their cookies and drank a Capri sun. Made dinner and hot cocoa. There was a couch there and so I crashed on the couch with Brown between my feet.
Tuesday morning I woke up and the forecast called for 80% chance of thunderstorms. So I decided to take the day off and hang out in the church. It ended up barely raining.
Thank you readers, sorry for the delays.