Coffee headed out early to head for the first shelter. I hung back and hiked with Zion. She wanted to stop at the Green Mountain General Store, so we stopped there and had lunch. Not too many big hills throughout the day or rough terrain, but a fun rock maze at the top of one mountain! Up and over and around a bunch of clusters of big rocks. It's nice to switch it up to different terrain, and this part allowed me to use my upper body to get through instead of just legs.
It was a slow walking day compared to normal, as Zion's knee was bothering her a lot. I didn't want to leave her behind, so I slowed down. After all, the point was to hike with friends. We still made our mileage into town and not too late in the day. Coffee, Lemmiwinks, and Cicada were already in town and showered. We met them at Anile's Subs and Pizzeria and mowed down on some great pizza to celebrate our accomplishment of reaching the halfway point on the trail.
Went to the Boiling Springs Tavern to have a beer to celebrate as well. A little too pricey to sling back several, so we left after one and headed to the Allenberry Resort Inn and Playhouse. Really cool resort on the edge of town. Great setting and had a great doze feeling, especially at night with the grounds lit up along the walkways. Normally the rooms go for quite a bit (we heard around $140), but for thru hikers, the special is $40 for a double. Sweet deal! I've been thinking that after the trail, I'm just going to carry my backpack in my car when I travel, with a pair of hiking clothes. The deals are out there, and sometimes it pays to be hiker trash (as some refer to us)! The room was pretty average, but the common area was really cozy in our building with wood and glass, leather couches, and a fireplace. Warm cozy place that was very comfortable. It's it a feel that I'd like to have in a cabin of my own someday. Ah dreams... The basement had a large open area with pool, ping pong, air hockey, foosball, and tv's. Enjoyed showing Lemmiwinks what's up in ping pong, and while it was good to get back in the game and play, I'm sure my little sister will still kick my butt when I go home this weekend (like she usually manages to).
Have had fun over the past 3 weeks meeting and hanging out with new people. Though getting off trail the first time put me behind those I had known and hiked with for a while, it's all good, because I met more fun people. It sucks leaving these guys that I've enjoyed hanging out with lately, but the thoughts of meeting even more people when I get back on the trail is exciting.