Trail Journal

Date: January 25 2001
Trail Day: 239
Miles Today: 21
Location: Shelton's Corner
Section Mile: FNST 207
ECT Mile: 3668

Last night was somewhat cold - just above freezing. We hiked the remaining 5 miles or so and continued the road walk to Shelton's corner. Econfina is a beautiful creek. There is one place with a spring underwater that's so big that the water seems to be boiling in that area. This trail is going to be a popular section once it is complete.

Also ran into a prison crew clearing up the litter along the road. They were extremely curious about our hike. It was fun talking to them.

Towards evening Sidney stopped by and offered us a ride. We talked for a while.

We bought dinner at the store on Shelton's Corner. The lady there was Lorraine. She was a nice lady.

Nomad cooked beef stew for both of us. It was excellent. We camped in a park about a quarter mile south of Shelton's Corner.

Date: January 26 2001
Trail Day: 240
Miles Today: 14
Location: Cherokee Motel, Bloantstown
Section Mile: FNST 221
ECT Mile: 3682

It was very cold last night - about 25 F. Since I have sent back my liner and flannel jacket, I am now somewhat uncomfortable at 25 F. I will try and just pull through with the gear I have now as we are now in the beginning stages of the warming trend.

Nomad and I had breakfast at the store on Shelton's corner. We talked to a local gentleman for a long time. It was interesting.

Nomad is going to be visiting some friends for two days, so we said our goodbyes. Got to Blowntstown and checked into a motel. Quite warm out today

Date: January 27 2001
Trail Day: 241
Miles Today: 5
Location: Cherokee Motel, Blounstown
Section Mile: FNST 226
ECT Mile: 3687

Decided to do a short day into Bristol. There is a long bridge over the Apalachicola river. Its about 3 miles long.

Picked up the Florida trail guide that Vivek has mailed to me in Bristol. However the motel had no vacancies. Stopped by the library to check email. Tried to get a ride back to Blounstown for about 2 hours with no success. Then talked to the motel owner in Bristol if he could give me a ride to Blounstown and back if I stayed at his motel Sunday. His name is Prashant. He is from India. Almost all the motels that I have run across are owned by Indians. He was quite friendly and gave me a ride.

Date: January 28 2001
Trail Day: 242
Miles Today: 0
Location: Snowbird Motel, Bristol
Section Mile: FNST 226
ECT Mile: 3687

Got a ride back to Bristol from Prashant. He charged me the same rate Cherokee motel charged me although the room is much better. Quite happy.

Talked to Kumar, Suriyan, Vivek, Vikas, Sangita and Mari. Looks like Vikas and Sangita will be moving to Texas. All of my friends and relatives have moved or changed jobs since I started my hike. Shows what a state of flux American society is in.

Date: January 29 2001
Trail Day: 243
Miles Today: 0
Location: Snowbird Motel, Bristol
Section Mile: FNST 226
ECT Mile: 3687

Zero day. Had breakfast with Nomad who is back from visiting his friends in Georgia.

Date: January 30 2001
Trail Day: 244
Miles Today: 15
Location: Camel Lake Campground
Section Mile: FNST 241
ECT Mile: 3702

Rained last evening and night. I was glad to be indoors. By morning the rain had stopped although it was still cloudy. Had breakfast, bought groceries for 3 days and checked my email again. Found a message from Janet and Jack Williamson. They were the ones who had brought in the stripper ! It was nice to hear from them.

First a 10 mile roadwalk. With this the major roadwalks on the FNST are done. There are still some minor ones and then there is the 200 miles or so roadwalk to Key West.

Then a 5 mile hike to Camel lake campground. Lots of pine and swampy area. I knew my shoes were not going to be dry today. So I ploughed right into the first bog. Drank water from one of the cypress swamp creeks. Its light brown in color because of the tanning from the trees but the water tasted wonderful - like mild lemonade.

Date: January 31 2001
Trail Day: 245
Miles Today: 18
Location: Near FR 176
Section Mile: FNST 259
ECT Mile: 3720

It rained a little last night. In the morning I wanted to sleep in a little. Hoped it would rain thus allowing me to sleep some more and it did! Today's section through the Appalachicola forest had numerous swamps and forest roads. Fairly uneventful day. Saw no one today.

Towards the end it started raining quite heavily and I got thoroughly drenched. I thought it was getting dark and decided to set up camp. Its tricky setting up a tarp in the rain. You dont want the sleeping bag and other clothes to get wet. I was quite dry and warm in about a half hour. Also found I had stopped about 2 hours too soon. A very short day. I will have to push tomorrow and the day after or I will be out of food.

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