Hiking for Habitat, Day 1: March 23

Hiking for Habitat

Day 1: March 23 (14 miles)

“Today marks the first day on the MST. The trail began on top the Atlantic Coast’s tallest sand dune – better known as Jockey’s Ridge. I felt like I had been transported to the Sahara Desert or into the setting of Mad Max Fury Road. Sand is already working its way into everything. The sand along the Outer Banks is loose. My heel sinks in with every step and sand slowly fills my shoes. I spent the day walking alone. But the massive flocks of birds, dive-bombing pelicans and pods of dolphins kept my eyes busy between each shell-crunching step. I occasionally stopped and talked with some friendly people walking their dogs but the beach was quiet today. Fine by me, I had a new audiobook and plenty of cliff bars to keep me company. I hiked 14 miles from Jockey’s Ridge to Oregon Inlet Campground. A hockey coach from Ohio invited me to his campsite for dinner. I ate ramen noodles, a long-time favorite for backpackers. Today was a humble start to the trip. Once again I’m noticing and enjoying the simple comforts of life. Especially appreciate being dry and trying to ignore the weather predictions for tomorrow.”

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