Monday, April 28, 2014

Back on the Trail

Crazzy, I say, crazzy.  I couldn't take the waiting any more.  I had to move out of the Fontana Hilton, a shelter at Fontana Dam NC for hikers.   I listened to others snoore.  I listened for the birds of morning.  Action, what action could I take.  I potentially could be set til Wednesday.  This was Saturday.

I got up determining to do something.  I gathered my gear as if I were moving on.  I waited for the Post, no package.  I called a hiker shuttle service and headed back to the NOC.  I'd pay their elongated prices but I'd have a ruck that'd work.

At the NOC a former thru-hiker helped me into a Granite Gear 60ltr.  It balanced my gear nicely.  I got it and head out.

The time was close to 6pm.  I made sure my headlamp, ready for action.  The goal, the jump out view and the next big flat spot.  I got to the view just after sunset for some of the views. 

I found Swim Bald unoccupied less one other, just after dark.  I lay my footprint down, pulled out the gear, and slept.

The sun woke me early. The crickets and beatles kept me awake at times.  The forest is always alive.

I made my way.  Before long miles clicking off an odometer.  I reached out and the Hilton's showers begged me to come.  I pulled in after about 11 hours on the trail feeling rejuvenated.  The shower felt good too.

Since that day near a week ago, I've pulled two other near twenty mile days.  The pack is great.  I will need to drop into an outfitter to swap out hip belts as the medium is to big.  I hear there's a great place in Hot Springs.

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