Tag Archives: trail magic

Rausch Gap Shelter 11/21, 1012.2

I walked up to the shelter dragging enough wood for a small cook fire. It seems the two guys already at the shelter had a different idea. They had already begun burning entire trees.

The two guys were brothers from an hour away.

“You’ll like my daughter,” Allen says to me. Well, well, well. I only met him thirty minutes ago.

His daughter and son came in a few minutes later. His son unpacks his stuff looks to me and says, “Hiker, you want a carrot?”

Before I could respond an entire carrot fresh picked from his garden this morning, still caked in dirt, was in the air coming at me. This night is going to be good.

Allen had brought entirely too much food, cooking spaghetti, preparing a fresh salad, boiling carrots, toasting a baguette.

Great food, blazing fire, cute girl, family with a sense of humor. And you thought I was going to be roughing it.

Port Clinton Pavillion 11/18, 971.1

I walked to Burger King on a busy highway, constantly pushed by the wind of passing semi’s, constantly smacked by the debris thrown by the massive tires.

An older couple offered to buy me a burger. They were amazed at the trip I am enduring.

I walked into the nation’s largest outfitter, Cabela’s, to buy an article of orange to avoid being mistaken for a deer. An electronic buck call advertisement made the noise, much similar to flatulance, as I walked by. A man looked over at me when the noise went off. I smiled, nodded, and kept walking.

I then proceeded to Cracker Barrel where I rested my pack in the opposing seat, my date for the evening. A couple next to me, ignorant of the existence of a 2000 mile footpath in the woods, asked me about my trip. When they stood up to leave, the lady asked me what my name was. Typically I’ll say thirst because that is my name out here. But instead I told her my given name, Grayson.

“No way!” She looks over at her husband. I look at him. He looks at me. I look back at her and she looks back at me. “That’s our daughter’s name!”

When they left, the hostess came by and told me they had paid for my meal and the tip.

A family at the table had waited patiently (I am a very slow eater) for me to finish.

“Can we drive you anywhere? Get you anything?”

“Actually, do you know if there is a grocery store nearby?”

“Definitely. There’s one in Hamburg. We can give you a lift.”

When leaving the supermarket, I fashioned a sign out of a Little Debbie’s oatmeal cream pie box saying “PORT CLINTON”.

On my way to the street, walking in the parking lot, a car was heading out. I figured try my luck and put my thumb out.

“What’s your sign say? Oh, Port Clinton. Hop in!”

Southern hospitality really should be expanded to “human hospitality.”