We made it through our first full week! Statistically, farther than 25% of potential thru-hikers make it.
We’re sitting in a motel room in Hiawassee, GA typing this blog out on our phones, so bear with us if there are a few typos 🙂
Day 1- 3.22.15- hiked ~4 miles
Started out hike at Amicalola Falls State Park on the AT approach trail. Our friend John Nam (thanks Nam!) drove us there and got some before pictures of us. We started in the rain, typical for our major life events 🙂 To reach the top of the falls, we climbed 604 stairs! The falls were beautiful though, and made up for the rain. We had our first experience with trail magic- a bag with goodies hanging by the trail. We split a Payday (side note- if you want to give trail magic, stay with your items until they are all gone so you are not leaving trash in the woods).
Day 2- 3.23.15- hiked 8.6 miles (-4 to AT mile 3.8)
We camped on a slanted spot the first night so when we woke we noticed we slid down at least a foot in our tent, not doing that again! Packing our gear took forever too, but we knew we were going to get really good at it soon.
The approach trail (8.8 miles) is not included in the mileage count on the AT. We finished the approach trail and summitted Springer Mountain on Day 2 around lunchtime.
Day 3- 3.24.15- hiked 10.6mi today (3.8-14.4)
The feeling of hiking the whole Appalachian Trail still hasn’t kicked in yet, we still felt like we were just having our normal weekend backpacking trip.
We did get our first rough day on the trail climbing up and down several mountains. We had to check the elevation charts for our route after finished and all we saw were these little humps. We came to a realization that we had some much bigger challenges ahead of us.
We have finally started to get a routine down. Quick snack for breakfast, hike, then have a sit down lunch, preferably with no socks or shoes on (dry feet= happy feet!). Hike some more, set up camp and make more food, fire, then sleep.
Day 4- 3.25.15- hiked 12.3 (14.4-26.7)
This about when we were getting the feel of a thru hikers hygiene. You can smell your body odor, deodorant doesn’t work, and you use camp fire smoke to cover the hippie smell. Everything is sticky to the skin when you try to get into your sleeping bag.
We finally camped with some others this evening and made friends quickly. (Camped with Crossroads, Katie and Yoga Mama). Jimi made a fire and started getting trail names quickly, like Fire Starter and Torch. It was obvious Jimi’s trail name would be fire related.
Day 5- 3.26.15- hiked 12.3 (26.7-38.4 +1.2 to Whitley Gap Shelter)
We were very excited about this day. We were about to summit Blood Mountain and hike down to Neel Gap where we would find food, showers, and be able to do laundry! Blood Mountain wasn’t as bad as we anticipated, except when we started going downhill on nothing but rock! It was so foggy we didn’t get to see the view, but there are many more summits to come.
Once we got to Neel Gap, we had the best shower that no human could explain, it was glorious!
We arrived so early that we decided to keep hiking instead of spend the night. Stayed in the shelter with Ed (Merlin).
Need to do some catching up on the blog when we get to Franklin, NC. Heading to the 11am shuttle. Should be crossing into NC this afternoon!