A zero day in Hot Springs

Downtown Hot Springs. To the left is the Outfitters, always an important stop for a hiker. I also visited the library and had a history lesson at the Welcome Center.
Downtown Hot Springs. To the left is the Outfitters, always an important stop for a hiker. I also visited the library and had a history lesson at the Welcome Center.

So far, this is my favorite trail town. I’d consider moving here to retire someday, just to stay near to the trail. Despite the snow overnight, it turned into a beautiful day, sunny but windy. Better tomorrow. So I’ve arranged a slack pack of 14.5 miles (Allen Gap south back to the hostel). That’s big miles for me but we are starting early ¬†and I won’t be carrying much. Plus I’ll get to sleep in a bed for another night.

Today I went to an impromptu church service, checked out the town, made a few purchases at the outfitters……and the really good news: I got to weigh myself. I’ve lost EIGHT pounds. Yup. That’s the AT diet plan.

Church with Bluebird, Queen Diva, Plan B and Tigger. There's no church like the gospel of the Appalachian Trail!
Church with Bluebird, Queen Diva, Plan B and Tigger. There’s no church like the gospel of the Appalachian Trail!
The hostel has a comfortable living room where I got to spend the morning with Chef, a Tigger and Bluebird (who hiked in 2006).
The hostel has a comfortable living room where I got to spend the morning with Chef, a Tigger and Bluebird (who hiked in 2006).

 

The Princesses hiked today! Vally Girl and her dog Jake, Flash and Noodle, all with (lightweight) crowns!
The Princesses hiked today! Vally Girl and her dog Jake, Flash and Noodle, all with (lightweight) crowns!
Valley Girl, Flash and the owner (along with his wife a Tigger) of Laughing Heart Hostel, Chuck Norris. He does kinda look like the actor, don't you think?
Valley Girl, Flash and the managers Tigger and Chuck Norris of Laughing Heart Hostel. Chuck does kinda look like the actor, don’t you think?

Trail Magic!

I’m staying at the Laughing Heart Hostel in Hot Springs, NC. This morning we woke to this view. Snow in the mountains!

The view if the mountains this morning above Hot Springs. Eeek! Glad I was safe and warm inside.
The view of the mountains this morning above Hot Springs. Eeek! Glad I was safe and warm inside.

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We are told there is a foot of snow on Max Patch, which I crossed just a few days ago. Wow!  Heavy wind today for my zero.

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Last night we we had trail magic from Johnny K, Bluebird, and her husband Chef. The first 2 hiked the trail in 2006.

Chef cooks up burgers, hot dogs and chili. I was particularly fond of the salad and fresh fruit--can't carry those on the trail!
Chef cooks up burgers, hot dogs and chili. I was particularly fond of the salad and fresh fruit–can’t carry those on the trail!
Laughing Heart hostel.
Laughing Heart hostel