June 4, 1998

6/4/98 Duncannon, PA

11.5 miles (1121.9 total)

It completely skipped my mind that yesterday was my 3 month anniversary. That other person, who got up and went to work every day, seems like another lifetime.

We only had one big climb and that was up Rocky Mountain. Good thing the trail was an old road because the entire mountain-side was giant boulders. But once again, up on the ridgeline it was relatively flat and you could make very good time. Hawk Rock gave us a good view of Duncannon. But from here, we knew that there was a steep descent towards the river. It went down, and down, and down. Then, as we neared the bottom, the trail split, having us go up. A cruel joke by some trail designer.

First stop in Duncannon PA for ice cream!!!
Eat up Cheryl & Ron (Soulmates), Longway and DB

Before even going into town, we stopped at the first convenience store to buy ice cream. There we were, all sitting outside, spoons in hand: Soulmates, Ron and Cheryl, The Brothers, Piper, Longway, Longstride and Smiley.

Once in town, it was laundry and grocery shopping for Piper, Smiley and I. Do you know how hard it is to change all your clothes in a place with large store-front windows? After that, it was down to the Doyle Hotel for 60¢ beers. With packs all lined up outside, we filled the bar. Others there included Koop and Numbnuts, several friends of Numbnuts including his girlfriend, Monument, and a weekender friend of Koop’s who kept buying beers for everyone.

Thru-hiker Heaven - 60¢ beers at the Doyle Hotel

The only person who had trouble relaxing was Smiley. He’d made a bet with Ghandi that he’d make it out of PA before he could be caught. And Koop had seen Ghandi a few miles outside of Boiling Springs during the day because he’d been slackpacking south. Smiley was afraid Ghandi would be walking down the street any minute. So after happy hour was over, he bought a sandwich to go and headed out of town.

Piper, Longstride, Longway and I headed for a campground down the road that the Brothers had found. The Riverfront Campground looked like a rundown hippy-vietnam vet compound but the price was right, just $3.50 and that included a shower. Longway, Samson and I ended up heading to Numbnuts hotel to watch the hockey game and drink a few more beers. Before getting too drunk, Longway and I got a bite to eat at a nearby diner. We teased the young waitress, as we were her only customers. Eventually ended up back at the campground and slipped into my bag under the tarp.