Jul 19

Rain, rain. Started raining about midnight and still raining hard off and on. Not doing any paddling today. But I am at a nice campground, laundry, showers, Subway sandwich shop, a gambling casino right next to the Subway, and a Dollar Store. What more could a person need? Had to buy a towel - can you believe I forgot to bring a towel - and some work gloves. I said before that the backs of my hands are suffering, they're the only parts of me that aren't covered up, so the gloves should help. I used sunscreen but my hands stay pretty wet when I'm paddling and, despite what they advertise, sunscreen doesn't last when it gets wet.

Even with the rain it wasn't nearly as cold last night as it was for the last few. I have an excellent sleeping bag that has kept me warm enough, and I'm thankful for that. Nothing worse than lying awake at night thinking how miserable it is to be cold and that nothing can be done about it. I also have my ARMY hoodie that keeps me warm when I crawl out in the morning - but it must have shrunk in the last few years, sort of tight around the middle.

I also have a very nice tent. Has an excellent rain fly so once I get in at night, I stay completely dry. I have found that a good tent and a good sleeping bag are essential. I brought a very small stove that burns Coleman fuel, which I forgot to bring and had to buy a gallon can at a Walmart several nights ago. The stove gets very hot, very rapidly and boils a pan of water almost instantly, but it's a pain to set up for use. Brought a whole bunch of other stuff that I have found necessary from my backpacking days, cooking pans, knife, fork and spoon, one of those little butane lighters - matches never stay dry - all sort of other small items. I'd planned on eating in restaurants along the way but they are few and far between. I brought a stash of food, soup, ramen noodles, chili packets, small fruit cups, instant coffee, instant oatmeal, and I have to restock now and then when I can find a store.

Well, the rain had stopped about about an hour ago, but the sky is very dark to the west, threatening. I will be on my way again tomorrow morning, rain or shine - hopefully, shine.