day 40
skyline drive, virginia

"I can snit like the wind." -k.
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Skyline Drive:
Length: 105 mi.
Speed Limit: 35 mph
Highest Pt.: Stoney Man
Height: 4011 ft.
Trails: 500 mi.

Claim to Fame: Probably one of the most beautiful stretches of road you'll ever drive.

Best Dressed Snitter
Making Apple Butter:
1. Pick the apples, or get them from a local orchard.
2. Peel them either by hand or with a peeler crank.
3. Snit them (for instructions on snitting, see main body).
4. Wash the snitted bushels.
5. Place washed apples in a huge cauldron with apple cider, cinnamon oil and clove oil.
6. Begin at 6:30am and continuously stir the apple mixture for 8 hours.
7. When mixture is slightly cooled, begin canning.

When properly stored, apple butter will keep for 5-6 years. However, once the seal has been broken, it is best to consume ravenously.
Uses for Apple Butter: 1. Pancake Syrup
2. Sweetener in Tea
3. Pour on Cottage Cheese
4. Spread on Toast or English Muffins
5. Apple Dip
6. Spread on Tortilla and cook over open fire.

Hey Beavis!
I made it onto the website before you did! Uhhuhhuh.

The Big Snit
Oct 5 - When you wake up in the morning, a part of you is filled with wonder, imagining all the things that might happen during the course of the upcoming day. It might be adventure, it might be excitement, or it might just be the humdrum of the everyday. When we started out this morning, it never crossed our minds that, by the close of the day, we'd be snitting.

It was the Apple Butter Festival in Skyland. I remember it like it was yesterday. We were looking for the Miller's Head Trail, suggested to us by a spectacled, bearded Ranger named Kevin as a short yet scenic nature hike. We came upon a sign that changed our day like we never expected. That sign read "Apple Butter Festival: Today" and it had an arrow.

And by gum, we followed that arrow. We followed the road to the Skyland Conference Hall, and were greeted by a room full of folks peeling, coring and cutting all sorts of homegrown Virginia apples. We helped ourselves to a scoop of apple butter, made fresh yesterday. It was just like a little old spoonful of heaven. Heaven with lots of cloves.

What a wakeup! Well before dawn, we were woken up by a large black bear on our picnic table. He had found the BBQ sauce we had spilled while making dinner the night before, and was cleaning it off with his tongue. The camera was in the car, but we did get this photo of the mark he left on our temporary water jug. Notice the "Super Size".
Then we had a crack at the apple cobbler. Land sakes alive, that stuff was tastier than angels pissing on your tongue. We complemented the workers on a job well done. They asked if we were looking for employment. It didn't pay well, but it had good benefits. The room laughed, and laughed harder when we took them up on their offer.

And so, just like that, we became snitters.

I suppose by now you're wondering what it means to "snit". Snitting a peeled apple consists of quartering it, scooping out the core and seeds, then halving the quarters and putting them into a bucket. We must have gone through about two bushels of apples (a bushel is a box measuring approximately 24" x 18" x 12". A traditional bushel is a round basket) with the help of our snitting instructor, Penny (that's her in the photo at the top). Her family has made apple butter for as long as she could remember.

We snitted until the sun got low in the sky, enough to get down to the last few apples in the bushel before Uncle Frank came by with a fresh batch. They thanked us for our help and sent us on our way with a piece of apple cobbler each as payment. I guess that's what they meant by good benefits. That was some tasty apple cobbler, let me tell you.

We'll never forget you, Skyland! You were a snitter's paradise.

Profiles in Courage:
Meet Payton West, Appalachian Trailer

From: Chattanooga, TN
Occupation: High School Graduate
Trail Nickname: Jeep
A.T. Start Date: June 18
A.T. Starting Point: Mt. Katahdin, Maine
Distance to go: 841 miles
How did you prepare? Not much really... there was a mountain I ran up and down about 7 times over the course of a month, but that's about it.
Are many other people doing it? I've met about 500 people going the other way. Most people take it South to North.
Is it easier or harder than you thought? I'd say easier, but I am fast-tracking a few parts. I want to be in Nanahalo River, North Carolina for the Fall Festival. I'm supposed to be meeting friends there.
How much is it costing you? About $3000. Most of it goes to food, and you hit a town every 3-4 days. Most campgrounds will let you use the facilities for free, so that's not too bad. This is my third pair of shoes, though.
Worst state to hike? Pennsylvania was the worst part so far. Most of it is flat, rocky and dry.
Any advice for anyone thinking of doing the A.T.? Try doing the Long Trail in Vermont. That's about three weeks of hiking instead of four months. Also, when you're trying to buy your gear, phone around to different companies, tell them what your doing and you might get a discount. Another good trick: phone a company, tell them you bought something from them and it broke. They just might send you one free.
Words of Wisdom: Pack light, and don't wear boots.

skyline highlights...

Changing Colors

Mel In His Element

A Gentle Slope

Another Appalachian
more photos in the archive...

We've got mail...

...the word "pissing" is a bit harsh...I think "peeing" would have been easier to visualize...
- Dad

Drop us a note!

Current Location
(get out your push pins)

Skyline Drive, VA

Next Stop: Washington, D.C.

see the full map...

Today's Weather:
A Lovely Autumn Day

Daily Stats

Apples Snitted:225
Time:2 hrs
Cobblers Eaten:3

National Parks Pass:
Original Cost:$50.00
Saved Here:$10.00
Total Savings:$30.00

Sleeping Quarters
Bill & Mindi Gardner's

Wouldn't you know it... Our old pal Greg Gardner is in DC visiting his folks. On 45 minutes notice, they had the spare room all ready for us. Thanks a bundle! (By the way, that's a picture of their dog, Guinness).

Laundry Room
Loft Mountain
Both:Lucky Charms
Apple Butter Festival
SKyline Drive
Both:Apple Cobbler
Cost:2 Hrs Labour
Greg's Parents' Place
Order:XL Pep & Sausage
XL Onion & GP
Garlic Bread
Buffalo Wings
Cost:Greg's Treat

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© 2001. Kevin Beimers and Aimee Lingman. Internet Professionals, Adventure Snitters.