May 14 - Atkins, VA (542.2)

- Enjoying Magic on a beautiful day
We pack, call a taxi, and are on Trail about 10. We are going to Atkins, 11.5 miles away, and can take our time. First half of mileage is gradually up hill with its share of rocks.

Second half was more interesting. Saw my first snake, which may have been a young Rat snake. Non poisonous, and supposedly can get quite large, but this one was a couple feet long. 

Slithering down the Trail but not yielding, tapped it with a pole, and it turned and looked at me as if to say, "What?".

Make it down the hill, past two gaps with power lines (one buzzing loudly), and to an 1894 one room schoolhouse called the "Lindamood School". It's open to hikers and inside are coolers full of cold sodas, snacks, plus bins full of personal supplies (lotion, soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, etc.) supplied by a local Methodist church. First a Coke, then a Dr. Pepper.

You can't imagine how good a nice cold soda tastes after hiking. You can't, hard as you try. It's that good.

Other hikers are here and it's relaxing. Nice sunny day, sitting on the wood porch of this old school, looking out across a grass field that is also the Trail. A white truck pulls up and a woman, obviously a hiker, gets out to offer Mozey a ride. He's leaving the Trail with leg and feet problems, a salt-of-the-earth guy from Rhode Island. Well respected, he will be missed.

Finish last few miles to Atkins and stay at the Relax Inn, not a hostel as we thought, but a low cost motel. Dinner is from our full food bags. 


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