This is a trailhikers blog from 2005. There is no mention of what the guy called the dog..But can we gather anything from this? Any new details? Before he was "really noticed"? I'm going to copy and paste here in its entirety the paragraphs containing to what sounds like hilton- if that's not ok, mods, please edit, or pm me and instruct me how to correct it! Taken from - http://trailjournals.com/entry.cfm?id=214242 It rained and rained until all it would do was rain, so we had started out early that morning. Once we got into Cooper Gap, on the right hand side as you descend, a white van (possibly a VW) was parked and camped with a wet dog tied up outside. The dog was medium-sized and reddish brown. It barked at us as we passed, but no one seemed to be home. We stumbled into the shelter, drenched from an 8-mile hike through 5 hours of constant downpours. I remember I had just laid out everything to dry and was laughing at the idea we would have another shelter to ourselves. That is when this older gentlemen who I would have guessed in his 60's came into the shelter. He wore a day pack and on a leash was the very same dog who had barked at us back at the Gap. He wore running shoes and a black knit hat covered his thin white hair. A white neatly-trimmed beard covered his oval face. The first thing he said to us was that a group of about 6 hikers were behind us and asked us about our itinerary. We told him our story as we unpacked our stove. He told us he couldn't do anything but day-hike these days because of the pain in his knees. Said he camped in that white van down in the Gap and wondered all over the place camping for free in this area while mixing in dayhikes with his dog. We asked about the dog.....how old it was....did he ever put a pack on it? Those kind of things. He explained how he disliked people who take their dogs on thru-hikes because it was so mean to the dog. No one knew how painful it can be on a dog's paws. He pulled out a pair of tweezers and held them up. "I always carry these and stop and check on her every mile or so....it's good to always check for stickers and rocks on their paws," He said. This guy also volunteered to us how he made his living. He said he would take work on homes. Contract work, roofs or siding.....one or two a year in Florida and around the area and that would allow him to live in the woods. Told us it was the way to go. All in all, I would say ten minutes went by and then he wished us well and turned to leave. He and his dogged disappeared into the woods and I assume headed back to the Gap. I immediately turned to my cousin and said, "That guy was weird. He made no eye contact with either one of us, talked our head off and cared not one bit about our answers we gave him."