Day 25 Bike Path

Today it took us 5.5 hours to hike 7 miles with pack.  My front paw is hurting and Amy’s ankle is causing her unbearable pain.  There is just no way to get off the asphalt for much of the way and the bike path continues some 40+ miles to Cincinnati.

For anyone who doesn’t know, Amy severely injured both of her ankles and feet last April. After countless Dr. appointments, MRI and many weeks of physical therapy her right ankle was still in bad shape. She found a wonderful massage therapist, Tamera Buhrman, who worked out the pain. Amy has not had any pain since last October..until we met the bike path in Piqua, Oh.

So we with heavy hearts we will be heading back to Cheboygan, MI to heal.  We hope to get back out asap and hike from the Mackinac Bridge down to the Ohio border.  Then we can perhaps go to New York and hike back to Cincinnati and up to here in Xenia, Oh.

We may not complete the entire trail this year, but we are not giving up!

Princess Faith & Oel

Day 21- 23 NCT/BT Via KY

This is Amy, not Faith writing today.

We need to get off the trail for a couple of days due to a problem I am having with pervious ankle/foot injury.  I fell a year ago and sprained both feet/ankles pretty badly.  But, since early Fall, I have had no problems until I encountered the bike path from Piqua to here (south/east of Dayton).  I have been trying to walk on the grass alongside the bike path as much as possible. My ankle has slowly been getting worse, with yesterday a deal breaker. 

So today my cousin in Kentucky is driving up to our current amazing trail angel, Yvonne’s house to pick me up.  I am going to KY to get a couple of “doses” from some electrical zapping machine that will get me back up and on the trail.

Maybe while I am down there Faith and I can scout out some new trail for the NCT to go thru Kentucky!  (Cause 4,600 miles is just not enough). JJ people!

Anyway, just wanted to let you all know what is going on.  Will post in a day or two when we are back on the trail.

Amy,  “Oel”
(Other End of the Leash)

Day 20

Warm and sunny day.

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Addison reading to Faith.

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Nice side path to break up the road walking today.

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Blues Clues puppy prints all the way into Yellow Springs.

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Yellow Springs, OH.  Eclectic old hippie town – loved it!

Day 18 Dayton Rocks!

Today was cold and rainy.  We could see Dayton in the distance.
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As we hiked into Island Park MetroPark, the Five Rivers MetroParks and the Dayton Hikes met us for a pizza party! 
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It was amazing that all these people came out on such a cold rainy day to welcome us! They even brought me dog treats! Amy had pizza, cookies and hot chocolate , which she said was the absolute best! Thank you everyone, we sincerely appreciate the reception!

Day 17 Perfect Hiking Weather

It was a great sunny and warm day! We walked on the bike path, which we will follow all the way to Cincinnati.
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Amy and I stopped to smell the flowers! Spring is here!
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We walked to Tipp City. We see very few town signs on the trail so we had to take a picture.
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As we were finishing our day, we met Tom and Chris on the trail. They are local guys who love the outdoors.
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Our wonderful Trail Angel, Yvonne, Princess Doah, drove up north of Dayton to pick us up. We are staying with her for a couple of days and slackpacking through the area! Oh, thank you, thank you!

Day 16 Joined the BT Swim Team

I joined the Buckeye Trail Swim Team as Amy and I hiked the flooded bike path from Piqua to Troy.  Water was up to Amy’s thighs in places, and thus over my head.  Great sunny day and we loved the challenge!

Can’t go over it, can’t go under it, can’t go around it, gotta go through it…
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In the distance you can see a bit of the bike path that was not under water.
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See the big tree on the right? That is where I swam. Water cold!

Princess Faith, proud member of the BT Swim Club

Day 15 Trail Angel

Amy and I woke up this morning and turned on the weather forecast.  Tonight it is going to be in the low 20′s/high teens.  Really?!  We just can’t catch a break here!  (not that I mind the cold – but it is that whole skin vs. fur thing again).  We have about 25 miles between us and the next town, Piqua, OH.  We had planned on sleeping at a trail shelter, which is about half way, but it will be just too cold tonight.

Amy called Bob to talk about options.  I could hear the indecision and sadness in her voice as they talked about the possibility of getting off the trail for a week or so until the weather gets warmer. If only we could get to Piqua, there are motels pretty much all the way down to Cincinnati.

After she ended the call, with no concrete plan, we snuggled back down under the covers and dozed off.  Less then an hour later we awoke to a knock on the door.  It was Dale Wical, the co-section supervisor of this stretch of the Buckeye Trail.  He wanted to know if we wanted to slack pack today and offered us a warm place to stay the night!  Amazing!!

Packing up quickly and saying goodbye to the Dairy King Motel, we started out  walking on a wooded path out of town.  All of a sudden Amy stopped.  Across the path was strung a thin white string.  Amy could easily break it with her hiking pole.  We wondered who would put that up and for what purpose? 

With all the rain yesterday, the already swollen waterways were flooding.  Dale helped us skirt one mile long section that was impassable.  He even hiked with us for a while.

Here is a picture of a newly constructed bridge Dale and other volunteers recently built.

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Thank you guys!  We would have hated to try to cross the swift moving water below.
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Just then, the temperature dropped and hard cold rain returned.  It was a repeat of yesterday’s weather!  Ugh!  We had to wade through calf-deep water to get up on a road where Dale was waiting for us.  Needless to say, we were done hiking for the day. 

After talking to Dale, Amy decided we should just head to south to the next town. Dale drove us past the 20 miles a flooded trail to the LA Quinta pet friendly hotel in Piqua.  Thank you so much Dale and we hope to hike with you again when we come back and finish this section.  You were a lifesaver!

Day 14 A Tough One

We left our wonderful trail angels this morning.  Thanks again Neil and Allison! 

Hiked in 30 degree real feel temperature with it pouring buckets of rain.  It was the first time Amy was cold while hiking.  She needs to find a better rain jacket and waterproof gloves!

We got a motel room for night and I crashed out on the bed.

Oh, I want to tell you that we have been getting some great publicity:

First we gave an interview for the Crescent Newspaper in Defiance. The article was on the front page on March 27. I don’t have the exact link but I am sure you can find it if you search around their website: www.crecent-new.com