By Theresa on Jul 10, 2016 10:56 pm
To say that our thru hiking plans have evolved is an understatement. For the past week I have been ready to throw in the towel completely on this hike. I honestly was ready to call it quits and go sit on a beach. That was, until we yellow blazed into Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia. That turned everything around. Now I am currently sitting on a Greyhound bus that is on its way to Bangor, Maine.
Longshanks and I had lost all motivation. I had been feeling worse and worse the past couple of weeks and I finally went to an urgent care clinic in Front Royal, Virginia. Turns out that I have a gastric ulcer (waiting on the results for the h. pylori test). Not fun to deal with in the normal world, but even worse on the trail. I feel pretty nauseated most of the day and I am unable to eat large amounts of food (especially trail type food). Not eating right is a pretty big setback when you are burning through four to five thousand calories per day.
After that wonderful news, morale dropped even lower. We decided we would shuttle up to Harper’s Ferry and at least go to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy before we got off the trail. We walked in and immediately were greeted by the staff with a warm hello and congratulations of our accomplishments. We spoke to one fellow in there who recommended a flip flop hike since we wanted to take it slow for awhile. We both immediately decided we had to do it. We couldn’t give up!
That evening I booked our train tickets to Washington DC and our bus tickets up to Bangor, Maine. We wouldn’t have to leave until Sunday, so that gave us all day Saturday to visit Harper’s Ferry. While in town we stayed at the Harper’s Ferry Hostel and had a great time. We enjoyed the company of many other hikers we had never met along the trail.
I am not going to kid myself and say this will be easier. Doing a flip flop of the Appalachian Trail still means we will have hike another 1000+ miles. However, it will give us a much larger window of time to finish it in. Hopefully this will give us a confidence boost and also give me the time to heal up a bit.
Thank you to everyone out there that is following our journey and supporting us along the way! It means more than you know and it is helping us continue during the extremely tough times of our hike.