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.