November 6
Hot Springs, NC

Visit: Vivian and I drove up to Hot Springs, North Carolina to meet Murray on Friday night. He got into town in late afternoon. We left at 4:30 and got in around 8:00. Hot Springs is in the middle of nowhere, existing only because some warm water comes out of the ground into the French Broad River. There was a wedding in town and accommodations were hard to find. We rented a one room cottage right on Spring Creek. Murray was already there with his fellow trekker, Amanda, trail name Gorbachev from Albemarle, NC. She picked up that trail name from an earlier bout of poison ivy. We had a gourmet priced dinner at the pub. The two of them packed it in like they hadn't eaten enough lately!

The next morning brought a good breakfast at the cafe at the other end of town, then laundry. The usual gang of hikers were in and out of town: Skeet-skeet, Commodore (new name, but I can't remember it), Wal-Mart, Brun, the Spice Girls (all 4), Jonathan and Jessie (trail names???), etc. The big draw was the Thai couple who set up shop on the corner. We all pigged out on Thai delicacies. Excellent!! A trip to the outfitters rounded out the town business. With the addition of Paul from Jax, FL, we headed down to Ashville to catch "The Incredibles" and a trip to the grocery store. That night brought another expensive gourmet meal at the Bridgestreet Inn.

With "only" 13 miles to do, Amanda and Murray were slow to get going Sunday morning. In fact, they drug it out long enough for the Thai food to be ready for 2nd breakfast. After rescuing Murray from missing the AT turn off the hiway, we bid farewell for a week or two.

The plan is next Saturday at the NOC at Wesser where he will pick up his last supply box, then Springer the next Saturday.

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