Posted by: pjbarr | April 17, 2010

Down on the Farm

Start: Briar Rose Farm
Finish: Briar Rose Farm
Distance: 0.0 mi.
Trip Distance: 271.8 mi.
Side Trips: None
Side Trip Miles: 0.0 mi.
State: NC
Highlights: Relaxation with Allison, Secluded Mountain View Cabin

“I did absolutely nothing, and it was everything I thought it could be.” – Peter Gibbons, Office Space

Today was wonderfully relaxing. We slept until nearly 2 pm despite going to bed slightly before midnight. Allison and I lounged around the cabin the remainder of the day and evening. In essence, we did nothing at all, except enjoy being together. And that’s all I wanted to do.

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I did spend a good chunk of time compiling and organizing the GPS data I had collected for AWOL. I was quite proud at the comprehensiveness of all the data I had gathered both on GPS and notes. I hope that AWOL is satisfied with it and I pray that he is pleased with it enough to have me continue data collection throughout the whole hike. The idea of being able to self-support the expenses of my nearly 6 month thru-hiking endeavor is enticing and especially helpful if I am able to return home not completely broke as a result of my long adventure. Moreover, I truly believe AWOL’s guide book is the best AT Guide in existence, Yet I have found it alarmingly flawed and incomplete though not at fault of AWOL but rather old, antiquated data passed down through the years. I’m extremely excited to be able to aid in making it even better and modernize its content, even though it isn’t my book and my name isn’t on the cover. I’ll be very proud of the 2011 Edition, which may be the best AT Guide ever produced.

Allison and I walked down to the farmhouse and visited with Tom and Judy while we used their wireless internet to send and check e-mails. I was flattered that Judy had read so much of my web site and was so excited and interested in my thru-hike. She also let me use her scale to weigh myself – while I didn’t get an exact pre-hike weight prior to departing for my hike, I had a general idea from weighing during my pre-hike over eating phase. I got up to at least 175. I weighed in at 160 lbs. today. Wow! No wonder the adjustable belt on my shorts has gotten so long on its end.


I could write volumes about the kindness, hospitality, and sincerity of Tom and Judy at Briar Rose Farm. In my book, I wrote that they were two of the kindest people I have ever met. This is probably an understatement. Judy asked me about trail magic that I have encountered on my trip thus far which has been plentiful. But without question, I have received no greater trail magic than that I have received from Tom and Judy hosting us at Briar Rose Farm. I am so fortunate to have them as friends, and I can’t wait to return to visit these wonderful people and their farm. Thanks so much for the wonderful relaxing weekend Tom and Judy.

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