I decided this morning that although there was a wayside today, I was going to skip it since it was half a mile off the trail again and I knew I’d get stuck there. Instead I’d take the shorter trail to the campground and take a shower. However, once the turnoff for the wayside came, my feet just went that way. Also, it had started sprinkling a bit and it had rained in the early morning so I figured nature would give me a free shower at some point in the day and I’d go get a milkshake instead of going to the campground.

I got to the Big Meadows Wayside and got my blackberry milkshake and a cheeseburger and fries. I also got to charge my phone and make a few phone calls. I had been there two hours and was leaving, had just picked up my pack, when Storytime and Jungle Jym got there. I was hungry again so I decided I might as well stay a little longer. So I got another blackberry milkshake and cheeseburger and fries. And then I was too full to hike.

I have been weighing myself whenever I come across scales and until last week I’d maintained my weight, not a pound in either direction. I was happy about that because it meant I was getting enough calories and that was something I’d been concerned about before the hike. Last week at Sharkey’s house though, I weighed myself and found out I’d lost several pounds. It could be the heat and all the sweating I’ve been doing, or it could be that I just don’t get as hungry when it’s this hot out. But I need to start eating a lot more real food in towns when I can to make up for the trail.

A lot of people had gotten stuck at the wayside so we all decided to pack out some beers and go a few miles farther to the next shelter, Rock Spring Hut. I grabbed a nice 500 mL box of Moscato, which I put in the spring to chill as soon as I got there. Nature never gave me that free shower so I had a bandana bath instead. It’s been a while since I’ve been in camp early enough to get my chores done and hang out before dark. We had a nice bonfire too. Only 11.5 miles today.

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