Swift Run Gap to Front Royal, VA – Chapter 26

I walk from Swift Run Gap (Rt. 33), Elkins, VA, to Front Royal, VA, on the Appalachian Trail.

I read Chapter 26 of the Tao te Ching, translated by Steven Mitchell.

“The heavy is the root of the light.
The unmoved is the source of all movement.”

“Thus the Master travels all day
without leaving home.”

Deer play in a cemetery.

I make supper under a tarp while it rains.

“However splendid the views,
she stays serenely in herself.”

The springs become like rivers.

“Why should the lord of the country
flit about like a fool?”

“If you let yourself be blown to and fro,
you lose touch with your root.”

I watch the rain fall from within a shelter.

I meet a south-bound thru hiker, Mr. Tea. He will reach Springer Mountain, GA, in November.

This is South Marshall Mountain. Once I had a mystical experience close to this place.

This is the place – close to the top of South Marshall.

A map showing “you are here” – between North and South Marshall Mountains.

View from North Marshall Mountain — also a magical place.

“If you let restlessness move you,
you lose touch with who you are.”

For a brief moment, the sun came out.

It had rained almost continuously for three days. Then there was sun for a few minutes before more rain came. When I reached Front Royal, I found that my toes were blistered severely.

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