Monday, June 8, 2015

Loving Maryland!!!

We are loving "flat and fast Virginia" in Maryland.  Only 40+/- miles of the AT runs through Maryland, but we are loving every mile of it!!  Mother nature has thrown some thunderstorms and rain our way, but we are rolling with the punches and have appreciated Mel and Randi's amazing support and hospitality!!!!

Sunday 31 May 2015
My CVMA (Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association) brother, Mel/Riversnipe and his wife Randi, dropped us back off on the trail after several great days of slackpacking and relaxing at their house in Shannondale, WV.  We got on at Weverton Rd and began our trek up to Weverton Cliffs.  We were rewarded with a wonderful view down to the Potomac River.  There were rain storms moving in, so we didn't hang out for very long.  We did get caught in the rain storms but made it safely to Ed Garvey Shelter for the night.  We rode out several thunderstorms throughout the night, our tent did great and kept us safe and dry.
Hendo's Mom and Hendo on Weverton Cliffs

The view from Weverton Cliffs down into the Potomac River valley

Asiatic Dayflower/Mouse Ears

Monday 1 June 2015
Today we had a good hike from Ed Garvey Shelter to Gathland State Park, home of the War Correspondents Monument and War Journalists Memorial Plaque.  Learn more about Gathland State Park and the Momument here, Gathland Information.  More severe storms were moving in, so we called Mel and Randi and they graciously came and picked us up at Gathland and let us ride out two days of rain and storms, Tuesday and Wednesday at their house.
War Correspondent Monument

War Journalist MemorialPlaque

Thursday 4 June 2015
We got back on trail at Gathland State Park and hiked 0.4 mile to Crampton Gap Shelter.  It stormed and rained throughout the night, but we stayed safe and dry.

Friday 5 June 2015
We woke up encased in fog this morning.  By the time we got up to White Rock cliffs the fog had lifted some, but was still lingering .  The overcast cooler temps were definitely appreciated.  We made it to Rocky Run Shelter today where we met up with Twinkle Toes and Red Hot, two sisters out backpacking and camping for a week on the AT. We had previously met Twinkle Toes and Red Hot at Ed Garvey, so it was great to see them again and share an evening around the campfire.
White Rock Cliffs on a rainy overcast day

Saturday 6 June 2015
Today we had another nice and easy hike from Rocky Run Shelter to Annapolis Rocks.  Today was National Trails Day, so we came across a lot of dayhikers and several amazing trail maintainers north of Turner Gap.
A Potomac Appalachian Trail Club (PATC) member weedeating along the trail.  Take note Roanoke AT club, this is what 4ft x 8ft trail maintenance looks like.

Another amazing PATC member maintaining trail

More PATC trail maintainers

And 2 more maintainers
And the last PATC maintainer of the day

We stopped at the Washington Monument State Park for lunch and were rudely told by the nearby Camp Ground Host to leave the picnic table area because we were hikers.  Needless to say, this did not go over well with me, so I am contacting the Washington Monument State Park supervisor to file a complaint.

Hendo and Hendo's Mom at the Washington Monument near Boonsboro, MD

The front side of the Washington Monument

The view out from the Washington Monument

Hendo's Mom hiking over Interstate 70

Hendo hiking over Interstate 70

Interstate 70 zooming on by.

When we arrived at Annapolis Rocks Saturday afternoon we were greeted by a fellow 2014 thru-hiker, Bearbag, who is working as an AT Ridgerunner in Maryland.
Bearbag doing an amazing job as an AT Ridgerunner

Hendo's Mom and Hendo at Annapolis Rocks

Looking down Annapolis Rocks, some climbers were just finishing a day of Climbing

Annapolis Rocks

We wondered what all the loud engine noises were when we arrived at Annapolis...turns out Mason-Dixon Dragway is located in the valley below.

Looking eastward off Annapolis Rocks

Hendo propping up her feet after enjoying supper on Annapolis Rocks...lovin' my Ecosox

Saturday night sunset at Annapolis Rocks

Saturday 6 June, we had a great nights sleep at Annapolis Rocks, no rain, no airplanes, just peace and quiet and a nice cool breeze.

Sunday 7 June
We slept in this morning, enjoying the quiet and cool and had a wonderful breakfast out on Annapolis Rocks.  Some rock climbers were enjoying their Sunday climbing up Annapolis rocks.

The hike from Annapolis Rocks to MD 17/Smithsburg, MD was a rather easy hike with a 1.5 mile rock-hop section thrown in for some fun and excitement.  We did happen upon this gorgeous Doe and Fawn during our hike today.

Spotted Wintergreen

We had been told by the Ridgerunner Bearbag and several other dayhikers that it was supposed to storm Monday 8 June and we needed to resupply, so we made some phone calls and my CVMA brother Mel and his wife Randi said they would gladly come pick us up at the MD HWY 17 trail crossing.  While waiting for Mel to pick us up we ran into Indy, another MD Ridgerunner who we met hiking in the Shenandoah back in May!!!!

So we spent today, Monday 8 June, at Mel and Randi's resupplying, doing laundry, helping with yard work, showering, updating the blog and staying dry while severe thunderstorms blew through this evening.  Tomorrow, Tuesday 9 June we are heading back out and trudging north.

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