Thursday, May 4, 2017
Back on the North Country Trail - Hiking Eastern Ohio
I'm excited to be back to my quest to connect my footprints continuously to Wisconsin and then on to Colorado. The small steps in that direction took me through Skull Fork Covered Bridge and past endless wildflowers on this cloudy, drippy, early May day.
On the way here, yesterday, I stopped in for a quick nostalgic visit with a little piece of the Appalachian Trail near Bland. I knew I'd be in the middle of the Northbound Thru-hiker bubble and I was not disappointed. In a mile and a half of trail hiking southbound I passed more than a dozen fully outfitted long distance hikers. No mistaking this crowd. The men have six weeks of beard, outnumbering the women 2:1 by my rough count.
It felt so good to be back on real trail in the woods that I had to force myself to turn around and get back to my drive.
Here in Ohio the walking today was on very quiet dirt roads, mostly through unpopulated woods, passing a few quaint homesteads. I traversed the section between Piedmont Lake and Red Hill Wildlife Conservation Farm. Everybody in this area seems to have chickens and goats, with some adding brown ducks, sheep, and the occasional antique collection.
In the woods along a lonely stretch of road I passed this amazingly well-preserved old brick church. It looks like it may never have had electric power, but it was such a sound structure. It would make somebody a wonderful, quirky house.
I did only eleven miles today. Light rain in the afternoon was putting a damper on things. Here's the track of the day's route presented both as a static image of the combined route, and with detailed tracks of the five segments I did. Wikiloc does not let me combine segments--at least I can't find a way to do it yet.
In those trail segment links there are a few more photos--mostly wildflowers.
Tomorrow promises to bring lots of rain. Not sure how much hiking I'll get in, but I'd be a sorry sack if I took a 'zero' after just one day on the trail!