Happy SUNday, dear TFT Community! 🙂
What a week (or two) it has been, both on the trail and back at HQ. Yep. It’s been two weeks since the last progress update was posted, and we’ve covered a LOT of ground (literally and figuratively speaking) since then. …So, happy campers, drop your packs, pull up a seat, and let’s delve right in to the TFT progress report for weeks # 3 & 4.
First and foremost, today is noteworthy in that Logan, Kathryn, Oliver and I departed for Delaware on April 17. Thus, the TFT celebrates its first full month of the trek TODAY –woo-hoo!!!!!! 🙂
Additionally, Logan has logged 397 miles since the onset, averaging about 14 miles per day so far. If we don’t count the ‘zero’ days of non-hiking, then his actual daily average mileage hiked is 17.5, which equates to an average speed of 3 mph. WHEW!– now that’s some ‘humpin’!!!
He currently sits at cumulative mile marker 19.83 on segment 2 of the West Virginia ADT trail.
Here’s a photo of a map to help illustrate the significant portion he’s covered over the past two weeks; from Washington, D.C. through Maryland and into West Virginia. Aside it is the actual ADT turn-by-turn directions (click on photo to enlarge):
The past couple of weeks have been a learning experience for us both. I have had to re-hone my logistical support operations skills. Likewise, Logan has had to adapt and overcome some unforeseen circumstances as we mutually assimilate methodologies/rhythm for communication, re-supply and forward logistics planning that neither of us have encountered since our days in the military some three decades ago.
…On that note, it dawned on me that we both find ourselves relying upon our respective primary military occupational specialty (MOS), and would never have imagined in 1984 that either of us would be applying those skills in this fashion so many years later. For, you see, my primary MOS in The Corps was 0431 (Embarkation and Logistics Specialist), whereas Logan was a Forward Observer (FO) in the Army.
…Here we are in present day, on the TFT mission, fulfilling respective roles that are perfectly suited to the training and experiential knowledge we gained during military service. And, quite candidly, while it is somewhat challenging to balance the demands of daily work with TFT pursuits, the TFT endeavor is reminiscent of the adventuresome ‘fun’ we had in younger days during our military enlistment (albeit, with more physical pain and more heart palpitations presently than in days past… 🙂 )
Indeed, it takes serious coordination and planning just to ensure that Logan makes certain milestones in order to secure water, food, a place to bivouac, assuming he’s within cell range for us to even be able to communicate. The following photo provides a sense of the detail that goes in to executing this mission; this is a closer-up of the ADT guide and my marginal annotations during the brief calls/texts we have when he is within cell range (provided he still has battery power at any given time):
This particular stretch (i.e., segment 2 of the WV trail) was particularly challenging because he had only a couple of places he could stop to take a break (the roads in rural WV are curvy, hilly and not conducive to hiking along with oncoming traffic).
Concurrently, I was trying to utilize google maps to locate anyplace that might have a gas station/store along the trail route where he could get water/chow between stop-overs for the night.
…I thought surely we were ‘golden’ for a re-supply near Streby, WV when I found a gas station near a place called ‘Brick Church’, which was THE LAST place before his camp-out in Red Creek preserve (a.k.a.- ‘no-wheres-ville’).
Turns out, this place has been closed for two years, which we didn’t know until Logan arrived there. By the grace of God, a local resident stopped to help Logan get water before he secured camp at Red Creek campsite, which is an abandoned WWII ordnance depot up in the boondocks.
As of this afternoon (Saturday, May 17, 2015 @ 1330 hours), Logan is holed-up in Canaan Valley (Davis, WV), before setting off tomorrow morning for the next leg and week #5 of the TFT.
Yesterday I received the SIM card in the mail from Logan’s last two weeks traversing the C&O canal stretch of the journey. –And WOW!– what awesome video and commentary was enclosed!!!
Following are some highlights of the videos he produced over the past couple of weeks, all of which can also be found on the Trek For Truth YouTube channel – link here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnC8p75Hd5_t-U4Vp7rewKg
I especially encourage you to view the trail video updates # 6, #7, as well as the interview with Vinny Frazzitta.
Here are videos # 6 & 7 for your convenience:
It is very motivating and inspiring to hear Logan’s commentary in #6 &7. It’s also awesome to hear Vinny talk about his own mission to raise awareness for veterans who are committing suicide and/or dying at alarming rates due to lack of effective assistance from the very ‘government’ who assigned them to the atrocities of war.
Here is the interview with ‘Vinny’:
BTW- here is the link to Chefs Fore Vets, and we encourage you check out the incredible work that Vinny is coordinating and promoting while he bikes across the USA for veterans in need of our support: http://chefsforevets.org/
Other videos are very interesting because they provide historical and geographical perspective for this particular leg of the trail. The following vids show the slackwater area near the C&O dam, then the paw paw tunnel construct:
As we close out this progress report, I’d like to provide a reminder. If you’d like to follow Logan’s daily trail journal, then bookmark Unitic’s 2015 American Discovery Trail Journal by clicking here: www.trailjournals.com/TrekForTruth
Thanks again, TFT Community, for your ongoing support and encouragement. It is with much love and gratitude to ALL of the helpers and donors that we post this update to benchmark month #1.
…There are so many incredible people who fulfill so many roles of support; we simply could not manage this without their help. …Folks like Jim Patterson who has invested COUNTLESS hours building the website, Bob & Patty who help care for Cuz along with Kathryn, plus all of the very generous folk who have donated operating funds to our Paypal account, as well as trail angels and those in our ‘Soul Group’ who provide prayers and counsel along the way.
…Truly- this is and will continue to be a collective effort- for which Logan and I are humbled with appreciation for the generosity and love we receive along the trail.
I leave you with this closing 20 second video from my backyard, and a message for us all to consider: If dogs and cats such as Cuz and Mr. Butters can cohabit in peace –then so can we as a global family, as the naturally loving and compassionate human species that WE ARE.
Until next time, our peace be with you,