Tyler received more itchy bumps over the night. They are primarily on the left side of his stomach which is the side that touches the sheet and comforter. In any case, it's gross and annoying.
We packed up our dry gear! It was overcast, but not supposed to rain. A perfect hiking day! Funky, like a true champion, made us a batch of delicious scrambled eggs for breakfast. Lastly, we had to make a stop at the outfitters (right across the street from us) to get a new dry bag for Tyler's sleeping bag. The first one, after about 150 miles, ripped a few inches from the top. Granite Gear will be hearing from us! We also grabbed some precooked chicken (finally!) and batteries for our headlamps. In our usual slow out of town way, we hit the trail (that is the Hot Springs sidewalk) at about noon.
The trail was beautifully flat for a couple of miles as it ran along the extremely swollen river, but even after leaving the river, the trail never ended up getting too crazy throughout the day. We ran into a bunch of hikers leaving town, fresh off of zeros, including Rabbit, Two Sticks, and Spills. Duckfart was staying in town for a double zero, such hedonism!
Several miles in, the trail skirted a small pond, created by a concrete dam. We ate lunch on a bench in front of it and Funky finally got to use some of his fishing line wrapped around a pen to try and catch one of the fish we could see in the water. A day hiker came through with her dog, Dobby. It's always nice to meet day hikers and talk about the trail, especially when they have lovely dogs. The day hiker left, and so did we. We left Funky to his fishing. He said he'd catch up when he gave up or had something to cook.
The rest of the day was peaceful and uneventful. We pulled into Spring Mountain Shelter, grabbed some water and went to look for a little stealth camp to call our own. Our little short out of town days are now a quick 12 miles in an afternoon. Turns out that we are getting stronger and faster!
We set up camp and soon saw Funky coming down the hill towards us, fishless, but excited to make a fire now that it had been dry for 24 hours. Our camp was perfectly situated so we would get sunset and sunrise.
Funky made some dandelion and pine needle tea for Tyler, as Emily informed Funky too late that she is allergic to dandelion, she did not have any. The sunset was radiantly warm and the stars were clear. After our last harrowing days in the woods, it was a perfect return to our nomadic ways.