There was heat lightning in the distance when we went to bed last night. We left the fly off of the tent, as we often do, so we could get as much air flow as possible. It took awhile for me to fall asleep but somehow I did. I woke at 1:30 to lightning and thunder that felt very close. I nudged Seth and suggested we put the fly on. We jumped out and hurriedly staked it down just as it was starting to sprinkle. The downpour came before we got inside and we ran beneath the park pavilion until it slacked off a bit. Josh had not put his fly on either and he was also scrambling around. The storm continued for probably an hour and turned to a light rain. Thankfully it was finished by morning and we had some nice clouds to block the sun's heat.
Seth and I took a break in the first town we passed, meeting up with George, Josh, Mick, and Claudia. On our way out of town we saw a lemonade stand and stopped. Brookelynn was in 3rd grade and was raising money to go to Florida with her aunt. :) In a few more miles ee came upon a fire tower and climbed to the top for a great view of the forest around us.
We had 4 big climbs today and stopped at a camp store before the first to fuel up with Gatorade and cookies. It was a steep, steep climb and I was pouring sweat from every inch of my body! We made it to Eminence for a lunch break with the crew and got back on the road for 27 more miles to Ellington.
We are officially in the Ozarks and they are wonderful...dense forests and winding mountain roads. There are large rivers in the valleys and shade on the roads. I love being in the forest again, but the climbs are steep!
We heard rumbles of thunder a few miles from town but got in before the rain. We found Josh and Mick at the diner and joined them for dinner. George arrived shortly after and not 10 minutes later the rain and thunder came. It felt great to be in town and not out in the rain. We got a hotel for the night and the shower was wonderful after such a hot and sticky day!