Monday, February 18th, 2019
We slept well in the Hillcrest Baptist Church shelter during the rain, and Wilton was there to greet us in the morning with sausages! We talked to him and his brother more about the aftermath of Hurricane Michael and the challenges those faced who lost their homes in the disaster. We were absolutely saddened that there wasn’t more coverage on it up north. It seemed insurance companies were taking advantage per usual, relief efforts were only provided for some, and all those affected had been long forgotten by the rest of the country. I suppose it’s the tragic reality of most natural disasters.
It took a lot of motivation to get our butts back to hiking. The people of the church had been beyond hospitable! Also, all the road walking had left my feet badly blistered, so I was less than thrilled to put pressure on them again.
I’d be more than happy to take a break by the Altha trailhead, which ended up being closed off. Which meant, you guessed it! More road walking!
As we had been warned, the destruction left by the hurricane became more and more evident as we proceeded to Chipola. The pictures I captured hardly does it justice.
When we got closer to Blountstown, we noticed more repairs and clean up. I was under the impression that that was the dividing point between the less fortunate and the well off.
We reached the bike trail that guided us into town, and were greeted by some adorable pups!
The motel we originally planned on crashing at looked more like an opium den with some shady people lurking around. So we headed to McDonalds to eat and regroup. When you’re exhausted, sometimes you make poor decisions. In this case, I’m referring to paying an astronomical amount of money for a roach motel.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve stayed in many budget motels on the Appalachian Trail, and this one was no different. Had the price been lower, you would’ve heard no complaints, but this guy was taking advantage of people. It was kinda nice to shower and do some laundry in the tub, just not for $95!
18.7 miles (30.1 km)
If you’d like to help the victims of the aftermath of Hurricane Michael, please donate to the American Red Cross.