Day 4: Sunday, August 17

All alone at the RPH Shelter (AT SOBO mi 760.8), walked 9.0 miles today plus about one to another deli

Woke up a little after six with the Wolfpack (the collective name for guys at the shelter, last name Wolf or Wolff for two of them, who are father and son) but left ahead of them by 7. Had a calm four miles to the first road, down which was--surprise!--another deli. Being New Yorkers, of course they could make a sandwich for me at 8:45am, so I sat outside the store and had that for second breakfast along with a quart of milk, then ordered another for the road. Another hiker was there about the same time as me, a NOBO thru named Cardio Man. What's he like? It's not important. Cardio Man. Actually, he and I chatted for awhile--a Colorado outdoorsmanly jack of all trades who has for some reason decided to do the AT instead of one of the Western trails for his first and, according to him, only long-distance hike. He was about as impressed with this section of the trail as I am (read: not especially). 

Felt so physically beaten down at the end of yesterday and most of this morning that I thought a half-day would do me good, so I rolled into this shelter, the RPH Cabin, around 12:30, took a nap, then stuck around the rest of the day. It's not a typical shelter; it appears to be a converted cinder-block outbuilding from possibly an old farm or estate, and it's very close to a road and has a grassy lawn and a shady picnicky ramada around the back. I knew already that you could order delivery pizza from it (which I did not), and I assumed it would be chock full o' hikers come evening time. Instead, the last people I saw here passed through around 3:30 and it's been oddly deserted since. Passed most of the afternoon reading Evelyn Waugh's Brideshead Revisited, which I picked up in Kent at the book sale. It's a bit of an odd one to be reading on the trail, since it's about gay Oxford boys in 1920s England. Tomorrow with the right start time and rejuvenated legs I may be able to make it to a much-needed hotel stay around Bear Mountain in 20+ miles.

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