Thursday, July 22, 2010

Bye Bye West Virginia

I should have posted this a few days ago but Big Ooh, Koopa and I have ramped up the daily mileage so it leaves a little less time to blog...

If you think that thru hikers don't have to deal with "traffic jams" due to "road construction" you'd be incorrect. I'll be honest, I was pretty surprised when I ran into this myself but the photo is proof!

Somewhere on the other side of this bridge is the West Virginia / Maryland boarder. While attempting to cross the bridge (on Saturday, July 17th) I was stopped by a construction crew who was in the process of tearing up small sections of the existing wood planks to replace them with a composite, simulated wood plank. They informed me that the wait to cross the bridge would be 30 minutes. I didn't take that news too well and protested that "I was a thru hiker and was going 20 miles that day!"

Just typing out my little tantrum makes me a bit embarrassed but adding an additional half hour of simply standing on a bridge wasn't in my plans that day (or any day between here and Maine). Unfortunately the river, far below, was wide, deep and swift so my only option was to wait .... and stare at the crew's foreman (which I did with some success). After 20 minutes he came over, drug a platform across the gaping hole and told me I could cross.

Unfortunately, once across I forgot to seek out the state line sign ... So this is the only pic I have to document my farewell to West Virginia.

PS: My bridge delay did hold me up enough so that I missed the opportunity to catch up with Big Ooh and Koopa in time for dinner. Normally this wouldn't be much of a big deal except that, that night we were to venture .2 miles from the backpacker's campground to a fine dining establishment that actually welcomes hikers. Luckily Koopa and I touched base via cell phone long enough (before the signal cut out) to read several dinner specials to me. That evening, after what turned out to be a 20+ mile day, I dined on fresh Atlantic salmon, garlic mashed potatoes and fresh vegetables ... from "to go tins" while sitting at a picnic table ... in almost complete darkness. What a great end to a long day!

Rollin on,

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

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