The Pits: The Ridgecrest dorms are one slight step better than camping.
The Peaks: We dropped Trek off at Emily’s, then headed toward Asheville, NC. We stopped at exit 417 for lunch (I had Subway, the family had Hardee’s).
We arrived at Ridgecrest around 1:30 CST, unpacked, and then picked up Traci’s race packet. We made the short drive to Pisgah Brewery to sample their brews, have a snack and unwind from the drive. Traci got the Leaf Amber and I tried the Greybeard IPA. They were both quite tasty.
We came back to our room and had some time for a quick nap, then met up with the other NRCers (Klints, Alexanders, and Underwoods) at My Father’s Pizza. Traci and I split the Hawaiian Classic and the Pesto pizzas (Hawaiian ftw!). Traci got the Nooner Pilsner from Sierra Nevada and I got the Pisgah Pale Ale to help wash down our pizza.
After dinner, we came back to our room for the night. One of Traci’s friends referred to Ridgecrest as “The Compound,” and that’s quite a suitable name for it. We stayed in the Maple dorms, which are definitely no-frills rooms. No fridges, no central heat and air. Fortunately, we brought our Marpac sound machine. I will be thankful to Kim for recommending these things until the day that I die. I now own three (two Dohms and one Rohm) and I use them on a daily basis. They are a necessity now. And I pitied the other NRCers who said the next day that they had trouble sleeping in the quiet rooms. I wouldn’t say that I slept well, but I slept much better than I would have otherwise.