Day 61: CS1319 to Chester (9.6 miles - 1328.8)
Updated: Sep 16, 2019
July 7, 2016 - Last night I had a visitor come into my camp just as I was about to fall asleep. At first I didn’t know what it was but scared it off the first time then a few minutes later I could hear it again. So I shined my light around waiting to see what it was. When I saw it run off before I thought it was a deer but maybe could have been a bear because I was thinking a deer scare easy and wouldn’t keep coming back. So I finally saw some glowing eyes and saw that it was in fact a deer. Since I knew it wasn’t a bear I decided not to scare it off and just let it roam around and figured it would leave as soon as it realized there was nothing to eat which it did. I’m was just glad it wasn’t a bear or mountain lion.
After the whole animal scare and right before falling asleep I figured that since I’m ahead of schedule that I probably should get a hotel room for the night while in Chester. It’s only about 10 miles to the road to Chester so would make for a short day. I could use the time off to relax and let my body heal because those 30+ mile days have started to add up. My ankle hasn’t healed up as much as I would like and don’t want to have it get worse.
Luckily for me those 10 miles were all downhill to the road on a nice level trail. Also I had almost no pain with my ankle so I was debating on whether to stay in Chester but knew the rest would do me good. Before getting to the road I passed by the official halfway marker so I stopped to get a few pictures but not too long as I wanted to get to town as soon as possible and get a hot meal for breakfast.
I got to the road and tried to hitch the 8 miles to town. After about 30 minutes of trying to hitch I had no luck as the road crossing was at a bad spot as traffic heading to town really couldn't see me so by the time a car drove by it was moving too fast so wouldn’t stop. I really didn’t want to walk to town so I crossed the road and I saw a sign for a trail angel to call for a ride. So I figure to give the lady a call but just then a car pulled up to drop some hikers off. A lady gets out and asks if I want a ride to town. She sees my Tulsa Runner hat and asks if I’m actually from there. Turns out she is from Tulsa as well, a Jenks grad. So we have a nice chat about Tulsa on the drive to town. I get the quick tour of town including the local hospital as I was afraid one of my toes might be infected and wanted to have a doctor look at it. After the tour I get dropped me off at a local restaurant for breakfast.
After breakfast I went to go find a place to stay for the night. It appeared that the hotel rooms were kind of expensive so I was looking for a cheap alternative. My guide book talked about a local church that lets hikers camp in their backyard so I went over there to check it out. It seemed ok but I really wanted a bed plus a place to where I could get a warm soak for my tired legs, especially my hurt ankle. So I left my gear at the church and walked to the cheapest motel but they didn’t have any tubs to where I could soak so I would just stay at the church for the night so I went back there and got my clothes to go do laundry and take a shower. The laundromat had a coin operated shower so I was able to get clean while my clothes washed. Everything feels good after getting clean. While waiting for my clothes to dry I convinced myself that paying a little extra for a hotel room was worth it. So after my laundry was done I went back to the church to get my gear and head to a hotel.
The manager at the hotel room was nice and even let me check in early and told me a few places to eat for the night. After I got all settled in I took another shower as you can never take too much shower when on a long distance hike.
The rest of the day was just relax in my room by eating and watching TV. I even was able to get my soak which seemed to help my ankle. Before dinner I went over to the grocery store to resupply so I wouldn’t have to deal with it in the morning. After that I found a great place for dinner, some pizza place. After dinner I went to the store and got my a half gallon of ice cream to eat. Since I just passed the halfway point earlier in the day I thought it was fitting, I did that when I hiked the AT. However since I had eaten so much earlier in the day I wasn’t able to finish it.
Hoping for a great night’s sleep so I can get out of town and get back on trail at a decent hour.