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  1. #1
    New2trees's Avatar
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    AT Hike and Hang Oct. 1st - 10th OUR WALK IN THE WOODS

    Our Walk in the woods
    The adventure started as planned Jake2C and I drove up on the 30th and Stayed at the Top of GA hostel ran By Bob " Sir packs a Lot " we arrived about 4pm after stopping at Mountain crossings to unload a drop box for resupply. We meet and talked with a pair at TOG that just finished section hiking Ga and would head home in the morning they shared info about water sources and the trail. We also meet a young Lady who was flip flopping the AT she started in Maine and hiked down to Shenandoah and had now arrived from Springer to TOG. Very determined young Lady she liked being on her own and had not had a easy time on the AT she had somehow gotten Giardia and a case of Lyme's disease and was a little behind schedule. Tough girl. The staff was very helpful Thanks Bob and "Buttercup"

    Oct 1st Thur. day 1
    After Breakfast ( eggs ,toast, sausage, juice, coffee) our third participant arrived WoodStockRyan, and we headed to ****'s creek Parking lot to catch our shuttle at 8am ( cant say enough about Ron Brown and the service he provides. (706) 669-0919 If you need a ride in GA on the AT he's the guy to Call. So Ron arrived we loaded up and Ron made sure our cars were secure and drove us to Springer FS access road this took about 1:45 min.

    The first day was fairly uneventful the Fog was rolling in the views were poor and the Humidity high we hiked to the top of Springer and back about 5 miles Just before Long Creek Falls and found a great site By the Creek to set up camp. Our intent was to ease into the hike and do a few miles the first few days and strategically increase as the terrain permitted. Jake2c was nursing a Hamstring injury and I was not in Hiking shape.
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    That evening about 7pm it started to rain from the issuing storm we stayed dry in our Hammock setups an big branch fell nearby and we all swore it was right by our Hammocks but we never did see the Branch.

    Oct. 2nd Fri. Day two
    Little did we know This would be a long Day
    We ate breakfast under our tarps in the rain Packed up trying to keep things dry the rain never let up Mild to moderate to heavy even when it did seem to stop we never knew from all the dripping from the foliage. Our plan was to hike to the Hawk Mtn. shelter about 3 miles ahead eat lunch and re-access the situation ( this is the last water source until Gooch Gap Shelter) we knew that a storm was heading our way and there was no need to rush we had 10 days. We shuffled back and forth and on our way I ended up in the rear when I got to The Blue blaze for the shelter Ryan was waiting at the fork and informed me he did not know which way Jake2c headed. Fortunately there was a couple coming up the trail to the shelter and informed us Know one had arrived saved us a 1/2 mile " somehow Jake2c blew past the shelter I'll let him tell that part of the story" LOL
    At this point we tried to hurry up and catch him but by the time we did he was a mile down the trail and I mean down the trail all down hill so we decided to push forward we all were down to just a little water maybe a Liter a piece. ( fortunately Ron Brown does routine water drops at Cooper gap "Above and beyond")
    We knew the storm was heading our way and we all wanted to have access to a shelter to weather the storm the next shelter was Gooch Gap at mile 15.8. After a 11 mile day in the rain we arrived at Gooch Gap shelter about 5:30 only to see that it was near capacity it's a nice shelter with a loft and could sleep about 10 to 12.
    Ryan and I opted to set up our Hammocks in the rain and sleep outside Jake2c Squeezed his way in to a spot in the shelter. By the time we setup, Got into dry clothes( those of use that brought a extra set) and ate dinner it was dark and late.
    I wear ear plugs to prevent the lumber Jacks from waking me However I also cannot tell what is going on with the weather. But I do know it was dark very dark and raining. At one point rain had seeped into my hammock from my Whoopies ( I had them routed wrong a few minutes later problem solved and I stayed dry the rest of the night).

    Oct. 3rd Sat. Day 3 ( a river runs through it)

    Well I awoke to a small creek under my Hammock, Fortunately I stayed dry for the most part had a little dampness on my under quilt from splash up but not bad. We ate breakfast and chatted with the fellow Storm chasers. we were in no hurry to leave it was still raining pretty hard. before we left 4 more arrived seeking shelter from the storm. Luck for us the temps were mild for the most part and we put our wet gear back on and hit the trail around 11 pm still raining we arrived soaking wet at Woodys Gap around 3:30 pm a soggy wet 5 miles the trail was a creek the creek crossings were flooded and we were wet from sweat and rain. Lucky for us as I approached Woodys Gap I saw Ron browns 4 runner leaving I tried desperately to flag him down but to no avail. When we all arrived we decided to try and give him a call to take us to a Hostel for the night. ( i cant say enough about Ron Brown he goes above and beyond a shuttle service. ) I called Ron and he said he would call Hiker Hostel to see if they had room for us and that they normally would pick up hikers and shuttle them. well Ron couldn't get in touch with them ( power had went out) so he turned around and came back to get us. He drove us to Hiker Hostel they were full so he asked Josh if he could shuttle us back to Woodys gap in the morning ( Ron had a tripped booked already) that we would be at Super 8 He said no problem. We went to Super 8 were they were going to charge us $135 Ron negotiated a special Hiker rate of $80 ( above and Beyond).
    We showered washed our clothes in the sink turned the Room heater on and laid our clothes all over it to dry. we then walked across the parking lot to Micky d's and ate dinner.
    At last we were dry It continued to rain until Sunday morning.

    Oct 4th Sun. Day 4 ( Dry at Last Dry at Last)
    We slept in a woke to a wet morning but the rain had stopped. We went to eat breakfast at Micky D's, Check out was 11pm so we waited to the last minute to do so thinking the longer we waited the better the weather. we called Hiker Hostel (Josh) and arranged our shuttle back to Woodys Gap at 11pm.
    But wait it gets Better on the way to pick us up someone rear ended Josh's Suburban at a red-light that was out due to Power no one was hurt but it did delay him.
    Ok so we got back to the trail about 12:30 Mile 20.8 Woodys Gap the weather was Bleak but it wasn't raining and the forecast said it would improve. Well it stopped raining but the wind picked up something terrible we decided to make our way to Woods Hole Shelter 28.2 mile mark just in case the wind got really bad. We arrived to a empty shelter around 5pm so we decided to sleep in the shelter since the wind was strong and not dying down we did hang up our tarps to dry out we did not get a chance to do so at Super 8 LOL. Woods hole Shelter is small but clean and can sleep 5 easy just before dark a Father and son arrived we offered some shelter space but they decided to sleep in a tent. ( very Nice people son was 14 and very respectful) we all ate chow together and chatted for a while telling our storm stories.
    It was a very uncomfortable nights sleep for me I awoke several times in pain the 1/2" foam just doesn't cut it anymore for me. Again I had my ear plugs in and at one point I woke up to Ryan looking at something with his flashlight and phone I thought maybe he was texting Nope he was playing with a Bat hanging from the rafter. Hopefully he got a picture to post.


    Oct. 5th Mon. Day 5 ( our first really good Day )

    We woke up sore from sleeping in the shelter but the day looked promising we decided that since we would stop for awhile at Neels gap that today would be a short day and we would camp at Bull Gap mile 32.8. we made our way to the top of Blood Mountain had lunch and enjoyed the views ( this was the first time we could really see). We meet a couple who also started at Springer the same day and also weathered the storm. there was also 4 ladies having a girls weekend and day hiked to the top we chatted with them for a while and headed to Neels Gap.
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    At Neels Gap we resupplied rested a while and used the facilities. our next stop for the day Bull Gap about a mile away we arrived at Bull gap early and set up camp Jake2C picked a tree with Poison Ivy vines but managed to come out OK. This was a nice place to camp although it was right on the trail and the water source was a little far. We ate chow and hung our food Bags. Ryan managed to throw his rope and bag up in a tree so we entertained ourselves by trying to figure out how to get it down. We succeeded but Ill let Ryan tell that story.

    Oct 6th Tues. Day 6 ( No plan Really )
    Day 6 started really well we had a great nights sleep things were drying out some and aside from all the leaves and debris on the trail from the high winds on Sunday evening all was good.
    We had talked about maybe only doing about 5 miles on this day and staying at Whitley Gap shelter Which in Hind site was a better choice but we all agreed we did not want to hike the 1.2 miles of Blue blazes just to get there. At some point coming down Cowrock mountain toward Tesnatee Gap I strained My left Achilles Heel ( stretched it or something) when I arrived I was a little ahead of the others so I ate lunch by the time they arrived I was feeling pretty good ankle was hurting but I thought I would be ok. From Tesnatee Gap to the top of Wildcat mountain was one of the toughest sections so far almost straight up and not good for my ankle at Hog pen gap we were beat but decided to go a little further to find a place to camp. We arrived to a spot around White oak Stamp the site was Ok but not great Ryan wanted to press on to Low Gap Myself and Jake2C were pretty beat up (His Feet My Ankle). Not wanting to Split up we decided to press on So this day ended up being a 11 mile day. We arrived at Low Gap and I was in a lot of pain the ankle was swelling and I was unsure about tomorrow. The Shelter was crowded but there were plenty of sites to setup camp. There was a small creek I went down too and cleaned up man that felt good after sweating for the last three days. I soaked my feet and ankle in the cold mountain water. Refreshed I went back to camp ate chow and felt good the ankle was sore but I felt I could press thorough.DSC01782.jpg


    Oct. 7th Wed. Day 7 ( I'm done) :-(

    Slept well but my ankle was hurting and when I woke up I had trouble walking the ankle had swollen and when I went to the Privy one of the gentleman there David asked how the ankle was he looked at it and said maybe I should get it looked at he thought it was not torn since he could touch it with out me winching in pain but it appeared to be to bad to try and continue. So my choice was to go back to Hog pen Gap 4.6 miles all Up and Down or continue to Unicoi gap the next parking lot 10 miles ahead although it was mostly the same elevation except for the last two miles going down Blue Mountain. I went Back to talk with Jake2c to decide what to do Ryan had a Family issue at home and Had already headed back to Hogpen early that Morning. I did not want to burden anyone or prevent jake2c from his goal. This was a shake down Hike for Jake2c for his 2016 thru hike and he had all the info he needed so he was fine with heading out. having spent time in the woods in the weather we had we pretty much covered all the scenarios. Besides he had Boot issues and his dogs were tired and hurting. David and the two guys he was with were heading Back to Hog Pen Gap as well and Offered to give us a ride into Helen. I cant tell you how many good people we meet on the trail. We packed up and headed back our journey was over we only saw about 43.2 miles of the AT on this trip 4.6 miles twice. LOL
    But the experience and friendship I wont ever forget I look forward to the next trip whenever that may be.

    The Ankle well it only hurt to walk LOL so I came home and let it rest I told myself I would give it a couple days it felt a little better Thursday I good enough to go back to work today Monday but it's still a little sore. I think it was just Tendinitis.

    I'm sure the others can add to this but this is my story. LOL

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    Last edited by New2trees; 10-12-2015 at 12:00.
    Thanks,
    Sam
    "Home is wherever you choose to stop"


    www.batchstovez.com

  2. #2
    Senior Member Red Cinema's Avatar
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    Nice little run!
    //
    “Stories set in the Culture in which Things Went Wrong tended to start with humans losing or forgetting or deliberately leaving behind their terminal. It was a conventional opening, the equivalent of straying off the path in the wild woods in one age, or a car breaking down at night on a lonely road in another.”
    ― Iain M. Banks, The Player of Games

  3. #3
    Member Frayed Knot's Avatar
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    Great Report. Thanks for posting.

  4. #4
    New2trees's Avatar
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    Oct 2013
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    Thanks Yea it was a good trip overall
    Quote Originally Posted by Frayed Knot View Post
    Great Report. Thanks for posting.
    Thanks,
    Sam
    "Home is wherever you choose to stop"


    www.batchstovez.com

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