The Dog

We seem to have picked up another member of our group. Two hunting dogs with tracking collars followed us around yesterday. The other one seemed to be following a scent and moved out ahead of us barking and howling down the trail. The other stayed with us and slept in our shelter last night. He's a bit hyperactive and I had to share a summer sausage with him, but I kind of like having him around. We'll be in town today and will try to contact the owners. Otherwise, we have a dog I guess.

UPDATE: We got into Hot Springs, NC last night. We got to a local diner and tied the dog to a post outside. We started referring to him as "Muttly" even though I'm sure he's a specific well-bred bear hunting dog. I called the number on his collar and talked to the owner. A couple minutes later, the owner put me on hold because another call came through. It was a man outside the diner that knew it was a bear hunting dog, knew we were just thru-hikers, and thought we were trying to keep him ourselves. We all grew attached to ol' Muttly. I know at least Red and I were sad to see him go. Oh well, it wouldn't have been easy taking a dog on a hike through the Smokies anyway. Muttly is at home and hopefully putting some meat back on those bones.