October 3, 2021
Lisa and I
Lisa and I decided we would take a week and hike the entire Appalachian Trail in Georgia, 77 miles. This was the plan for weeks. My husbands good friend passed away and the funeral was a week out so I was not able to leave until Saturday night. Lisa made a plan to go and start at Springer Mountain and meet me at Hog Pen Gap 3 days later. She did it by herself and had some great weather. She was at Hogpen when I arrived. As I was on my way I received a text that said “Bring Bojangles” 😂
It was late so we stayed at the car that night. We took out our sleep pads and I showed Lisa how to work hers 😳 She didn’t use it yet. Mine on the other hand had a big hole in it. I patched it but it still went flat pretty quickly. This is gonna be a long night!
No that wasn’t comfortable. We made breakfast and were ready to hit the trail when a bunch of bear hunters showed up. Where did they go? Straight up our trail. We left about 15 minutes behind them but could hear dogs barking for a long way.
Just a couple miles in we turned off to head to the Low Gap shelter because Lisa needed water. When we arrived she said “There is a sleep pad in there!” and there was! It was an REI one too. It was self inflating and deflating. I deflated it and rolled it up and hooked it to my pack. This is what you call Trail Magic. The trail provides.
We continued up the trail. It was kinda foggy and drizzly. It made for a cool vibe but absolutely no views!
The trail was pretty easy as trails go. There were a few climbs that I struggled with. My pack weight 33 lbs. I was still in the getting used to it phase. About mile 6 it actually started to rain. We stopped to put our pack covers, rain jackets on. It was a slow steady rain so no problem. It wasn’t cold out. It was pretty humid. I was seriously perspiring. I could taste the salt. We kept on and about mile 8 the trail got very rocky. I think I was loosing electrolytes because my legs starting cramping. It got worse as we hiked. I was really wanting to get to that next shelter!
When we arrived there was a group there. There was 7 of them and they were all set up on the platform. It’s was raining pretty good by now. We decided to sleep in our tents on the floor of the shelter. I used my trail magic sleep pad and it was freaking awesome! Someone had a Kilmet pad like mine and made so much noise every time they turned over.
We cooked us some dinner and hung out with that group. There were two boys around 10 -12 years old, their parents and some friends of the parents. They were all really cool people.
I had decided I was going to call for a shuttle and go home. Three of them were going to call for a shuttle to pick them up at Unicoi Gap in the morning. I was cramping so bad now in my hands, legs and feet I said I’ll call. I arranged a shuttle for all of us. They gave me some electrolytes. Which seamed to help some.
It absolutely poured rain all night long. There were squirrels running all over the shelter and the mom was not liking it. We were inside the tents so we didn’t care. It was so funny because the boys kept spot lighting the mice. In the morning we all have acorns in our shoes!
I swear the sun was never going to come up. Everyone got up at 5:30. They were going to try to get to the next shelter and needed extra time. I decided to leave the sleep pad behind for someone else. I think someone dumped it because it was really heavy. The guy with the Klymit pad asked if he could have it. He ended up leaving it because he didn’t want the extra weight. 😁 After breakfast Lisa and I headed to Unicoi Gap before everyone. It was a more of that rocky trail and some uphill but not to bad. When we hit the road we took a pic with the plaque and Lisa took off up the trail.
Everyone got there about 30 minutes later then the shuttle arrived and we left. From the time we got into the shuttle till I hit the SC line it poured down rain. I hoped it wouldn’t rain continuously on Lisa. Turns out it didn’t snd she finished the rest of the trail in 2 days! What a beast!