Week 9: Where The Heart Is

Total Miles: 565.5

Miles This Week: 22.8

Location: Atkins, VA to Chestnut Ridge

The Good: My decision to go home instead of to Trail Days was one of the best decisions I’ve made out here. I don’t do well with large groups of people so I would’ve had a hard time anyway if I’d gone. Rainbow and her amazing dad gave me a ride to the airport hotel and I can’t thank them enough. I went home, ate all the foods, petted all the cats, and watched all the Grey’s Anatomy. I basked in the familiarity of home and family. Seeing my husband and son was essential to my mental health. I got new trail runners and left about 5 lbs of winter gear home. Another thank you goes out to Eddie at Four Pines Hostel for picking me up in the Dragon Wagon from the airport and getting me back to the trailhead. When I got back on the trail I was worried about being behind everyone but met up with two friends 0.1 miles in. The trail is like that. I passed the quarter way point! It’s both exciting and slightly depressing at the same time. While I was sad to leave home, I was happy to be back to hiking and finishing what I started.

The Bad: I didn’t make it as far as I’d hoped to the airport so I had to take some days off in Atkins to try and get a ride. Hence the sad 22 miles this week. I was only home for a couple days but spent 6 and a half off trail. It also didn’t help that my first flight was delayed causing me to miss my connecting flight and having to arrive in VA a day later than I’d planned. It was very frustrating. But everything worked out in the end and now I’m back to rolling green hills and cows and flowers and hiker love.

– Cyndi Loppers


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