I am approaching Thunder Truck campground in the rain.
DAY EIGHTEEN TRIP 142
TRAIL Thunder Rock 305 and OUT
A MODERATE WIND
A moderate wind picks up but doesn't bring rain so I guess my departure hour will be drenched. It's midnight on my last day and I just got off a cell call to Mitten as my battery died and it makes me wonder if I need to pick up a second batt for the thing? One more thing to google. Spiders seem to love this site and I've seen 4 already and one large trap door type on my pillow so I took him into the vestibule and zipped up the inner door so they won't come in and get crushed accidently.
ALL NIGHT RAIN
It starts at 1 in the morning and now at 6 it's coming down in earnest. My plan is to wait till 10 before packing and shoving off from here no later than 11 to give the storm a chance to peter out. It's a good plan made better by the fact that yesterday I left Rough Creek and cut today's journey in half. I think there's a kiosk in Thunder Truck which offers an overhang and a place to hide while I wait for Mitten and my ride out. I'll go ahead now and call it my wooden umbrella.
LET'S GET PACKED!
Actually it's 9 in the morning so I have an hour to kill under a dark sky but the rain stopped an hour ago.
A GOOD HIKE OUT
Okay boys, I had to pack in the rain which is a rarity for me but it's made easier by doing everything inside the tent and then unclipping the yellow inner tent and stowing it in the pack and then covering the pack outside while I quickly pull poles and wad up the fly to stuff. Soon I'm on the trail in a pouring rain but who cares as it's my last day. After a short climb I reach FS 45 and almost decide to hike it down to Thunder Truck but instead want to hike the pretty trail down the 8 switchbacks to the back end of the campground and so here I sit in a brisk drizzling wind by the main campground kiosk munching peanuts and raisins while having an hour to kill before the arrival of Little Mitten. Thunder Rock is a windy place but I have beaucoup layers if needed.
THANK YE BOYS FOR JOINING ME INTO THE SEQUESTERED FOREST OF THE MIGHTY COHUT AND ONTO WIND WHIPPED REGIONS OF PUCKERED O-RINGS WHERE A FEW SIMPLE TENT PEGS KEPT ME ALIVE AS MISS NATURE DECIDED TO FORM A BLOWHOLE AND TRIED TO SQUIRT ME THRU THE OTHER SIDE BUT SHE LET ME LIVE LONG ENOUGH TO GET OUT AND INTO THE DRAB WILDERNESS OF SYPHILIZED LIFE WHERE SCRUNCHED UP FACES SIT ON ROLLING COUCHES BEHIND STIFF WHEELS STEERED BY BONY CLAWS WITH RED PAINTED NAILS AS IF YOU CAN PUT ADORNMENTS ON A BARKING LIZARD BUT WE CAN'T STAY OUT ALL THE TIME SO WHEN IT'S OUR WEEK TO RETURN WE MUST JOIN OUR FELLOW BONOBOS IN THE WACKY MARTS OF MEN AND INTO THE SAVAGE PRIMITIVE WORLD OF MODERN AMERICAN LIFE
SO WASH OUT YOUR LOIN CLOTHS AND FALL IN LINE WITH THE REST OF THE RODENTS IN A RACE TO THE END BUT REMEMBER YOU LEFT A PIECE OF YOUR HEART ON PANTHER TOP AND IN THE COLD WATERS OF THE JACKS SO FIX YOUR NOSE ON THE TIP OF YOUR TOILET BOWL AS YOU REST A TIRED BUNGHOLE ATOP A PORCELAIN THRONE WHICH WILL WELCOME YOU BACK TO THE INDOOR WORLD OF THE SHUFFLING WALKING DEAD AS CONAN THE BARBARIAN RETURNS FROM THE FOREST MOUNTAINS OF COLD AND WIND AND SITS TO PONDER AND PLAN ANOTHER TRIP INTO THE ONLY UNPREDICTABLE WORLD LEFT FOR A HUMAN CAUGHT UP IN A BILLION PREDICTABLE OUTCOMES
SO MISS NATURE SAYS TO STEP LIVELY AND DUMP THE DEAD ZONE OF HOMINID LURCHING FROM WALMART TO LOWES TO STAPLES TO PIZZA HUT TO HOME TO WORK AND INSTEAD STEP OFF A CLIFF IN LINVILLE GORGE OR FALL INTO AN ICE COLD CONASAUGA OR FREEZE SOLID ATOP BOB MOUNTAIN OR GET RIPPED APART ON THE NUTBUSTER TRAIL AS SHE WANTS YOU TO FEEL SOMETHING OTHER THAN THAT DULL REMORSE AND SPIRITUAL SOMNOLENCE OF A TUNED OUT TURNED OFF GENERATION AND SO SHE WILL BE SHOCKED WHEN YOU UNPLUG THE TV AND THROW A BEDROLL IN THE BACKYARD TONIGHT AND SLEEP IN THE COLD
SO I'LL BE THERE WITH YOU IN FANCY IF NOT IN FACT AND WE WILL DO EVERYTHING IN OUR POWER TO BACKTRACK TO THE CRO MAGNON YEARS AND ACTUALLY FAVOR A REAL TREE OVER A CYBER TREE AND COLD MOUNTAIN WATER OVER FLOURIDE AND CHLORINE JUICE FROM THE TAP WHILE WE BREATH DEEPLY INSIDE A PINE FOREST GROVE AND STOP INHALING OUTGASSING FROM A FLAME RETARDANT COUCH AND INSTEAD HEAR THE RAIN PELT A NYLON TENT AS WE CURL LIKE BABY DOGS AROUND THE TEAT OF MISS NATURE'S BENEFICENCE SO LET'S GET READY FOR SPRING AND I HOPE TO SEE YOU GUYS ON TRAILS WINDING INTRICATELY THRU KINGDOMS OF RAIN AND COLD AND WIND AND SNOW.