Appalachian Trail Trash 2008, Part I

ALOHA! I am in Damascus, VA, called the ‘friendliest town on the trail’ and host of the annual Trail Days festival.

The planners wisely segregated the hikers into a ‘tent city’ on the outskirts of town. It is affectionately known as the FREAKSHOW where anarchy and mayhem reign. In the evening, there are bonfires, drum circles, and the obligatory over consumption of intoxicants. In the morning, ‘homo inebrias’ staggers off to their tents. In the afternoon, the ritual begins all over again.

The cake eating contest was won by a hiker named ‘CHEWBACA’; the talent show featured a stand-up routine by a hiker named ‘PUNCHLINE’.

Other trail highlights:

In Franklin, NC, I overheard a woman call me “one of them hackers”.

I saw feral ponies and men in kilts at ethereal Grayson Highlands State Park.

Best business name: HOG TROUGH LIQUOR

Best restaurant slogan: “You don’t need no teeth to eat our beef”

Shenandoah NP GA.ME.08 Summary: Beers 16 vs Bears 11 (I love this GA.ME)

My favorite shelter name: FULLHARDT KNOB

My favorite tart: Little Debbie’s Cherry Pie

My souvenir t-shirt says: The Appalachian Trail, like climbing Everest 17 times, 504,000 feet

Happy Trails, A Lo Hawk, May 2008

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