#33:Laurel Hostel

Life is so bright I need shades!

Jesse ended his day at mile 311.5 and at an elevation of 2928. He messaged me about this place before eventually sending me a video. This place is run by hippies who were formerly part of The Rainbow Family. The place was definitely laid back. The owners are former thru-hikers and brothers. And it is pretty much a shed but clean and roomy enough. A couple told Jesse to pass on this place because it was “hillbilly hell”. Jesse said “hillbilly hell sounds right up my alley”! And if by Hillbilly Hell they meant a fridge stocked with PBR and frozen pizzas than they nailed it!! He had a great time hanging out and he had the whole shed/hostel to himself. They exchanged phone numbers and one of the owners is going to let Jesse slack pack for 12 miles tomorrow at no charge. They will meet him with his pack close to the Bald Mountain Shelter. That will help him make some good time and allow him to put down quite a few miles before dealing with more rain.

another milestone!

Jesse hit another milestone….he hit the 300 mile mark. It was a beautiful,warm day. Jesse said it feels great wearing shorts.

This was the shelter the machete guys reign of terror began..mile 301.8

Jesse reports that this is where “sovereign” lost it. His log book that he burned and some of his belongings are still there. He then moved on to “Hillbilly Hell” where he totally flipped out and was kicked out. The thought crossed my mind (Momma) that the man was mentally ill. Many suspect that it had to do with 4/20 and a very bad acid trip. Last word was one of his charges was a possession charge. Lesson for the day: don’t take the brown acid kids.

Jesse was able to send me a lot of pics so I’m posting them all here. I will post locations under pics if I know the exact area he was in. A job that isn’t always easy due to spotty communication abilities and a bunch of pics getting uploaded all at once after a couple weeks. The fact he is spending most of his time experiencing and not just standing behind a lens is a very good thing. This is,after all, a once in a lifetime experience!

The trail is turning green again!
This view is why Jesse stops hiking mid-afternoon. He can set up his tent,gather wood for a fire, get his food ready and then just sit and wait for the light show.
sitting on top of the world!

Skunk and Jesse on top of the Rich Mountain Lookout Tower…mile 283.2. They camped below it for the night.

Jesse had to endure some legit rock climbing the last 3 miles of his day. Jesse said it was fun but his knees are feeling it.

exiting the mountain

Jesse is having a great time meeting new people and hearing their stories. Not only the thru-hikers but the people who make a living one way or another off the AT. He is definitely feeling a connection with the AT and I can see him returning to the area to live and work. his heart is full and he is so joyful!

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