Wednesday, 26 May
|Destination: 501 Shelter Parking
|Today’s Miles: 5.6
|Start Location: Hertline Campsite
|Trip Miles: 23.8
As usual the birds stared about five. I saw a flashlight and said good morning to Bob. It turns out that the flashlight was a northbound hiker on the trail before sunrise. Since Bob and I were finishing up today, we were up and started packing. It was our warmest morning in the week and a half we were out. No long pants or shirt were needed. The morning mist was thick. After coffee and breakfast, we were hiking about seven.
Today’s treat was the sound of a woodpecker along the trail as we started. Did not see another hiker until after eight. Good news – he was northbound and since we were southbound – that ended the spider webs across the trail. The first hiker on the trail in the morning always gets to walk through the spider webs. It is nice to meet a hiker coming in the opposite direction or have someone out before you.
Since it was so foggy we had no views. It was foggy enough that even though there was no rain, whenever a breeze came, raindrops fell from the trees. My glasses fogged up each time we stopped moving. The rocks were wet making them slippery.
Bob and I only had five and a half miles to his car and the end of this section but the trail was kind enough to provide the boulder fields that we had not seen since last trip when we headed north from Port Clinton. It seemed like half the miles were rocks with boulder fields thrown in for a change of pace. Fortunately there were no major elevation changes. It just made for some slow going.
We arrived at the 501 parking area a little after ten. After loading our packs in the car, we walked over to the 505 shelter. This shelter is most famous for the fact that you can have pizza delivered to the shelter. It is different from most shelters in that it is fully enclosed with a door. There were several bunk beds and a picnic table inside. It looked like a nice place to spend a wet day.
Bob and I headed back to the car, cleaned up, changed and drove to the Port Clinton Hotel and Restaurant and lunch. After the twelve ounce burger after our last AT hike we opted for the cheese-steaks. The restaurant is known for it’s “hiker portions”. We were not disappointed. The Port Clinton Peanut Shop is next to the restaurant and we decided to stop in for something to bring home. What a wonderful surprise, there is an incredible selection of candy that I have not seen since the 60s and 70s along with peanuts and kinds of other candies. There were wax soda bottles, coal candy, all sorts of Pez dispensers, fudge and lots more.
That wrapped up our spring trips with 100+ miles. No specific plans for our next trip but lots of ideas discussed. Bob pointed out that we had dry feet for all of the 100 miles, different that our adventures last year. All in all a great hiking partner for great hikes.