Day 15

Start: Rock Gap Shelter
Finish: Winding Stair Gap
Miles: 3.8 Total Miles: 109.8

In the morning, I finished off the last of my breakfast comestibles, and packed up as quickly as I could. Of course, around nine the previous evening there had been another thunderstorm, this time with hail, or so I was told by others, but I was too sleepy to poke my head out and check. So another wet tent to pack up. I wanted to get an early start because there was a close to four mile hike to the gap where I could catch a shuttle into Franklin, and supposedly the shuttles only ran at 9:00 and 11:00 am.

The elevation graph for the hike was a little misleading and the first mile was a bit of a killer, but I still made good time and got to the gap within two hours. As it turned out, the town of Franklin has instituted a shuttle service of its own, as opposed to the shuttles supplied by a couple of the motels in town, and the town shuttle would take me direct to my motel, a Microtel on the east side of town. And the town shuttle was only three dollars, which was a great deal.

I rode into town with Zirco, from Ottawa, and Mountain Dew. The Microtel is pretty bare bones, and actually it’s the first time I’ve stayed in one. They’re ubiquitous in Europe, but I don’t think they’ve been here in the States all that long. The one draw back to this motel was that there wasn’t a laundry on premises, so after I finished taking a shower I spent the next hour washing clothes in the tub. Thank god for quick drying hiking gear.

Food choices were as usual fast, and frequently deep fried. I managed to find a Shoneys with a salad bar, which I utilized the upmost capability only skipping the broccoli, cause who needs that? There was also a fried chicken side excursion, later on, but the less said about that the better.

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