Monday, September 23, 2013

Day 102: Erwin, TN to Bald Mountain Shelter

Miles today: 25.2
Miles total: 1860.8

I started today by bidding adieu to the two section hikers at Uncle Johnny's, T-Rex and Dad. After that, it was time to head back up to the trailhead at 395. It was downhill all the way into town, making me think maybe I could have done it last night. But that would have been about 35 miles on the day, so maybe not. I picked up my resupply and put it in my pack, making it oh so much heavier. Lately, I've been really noticing the difference between a light-food pack and a full pack. This one hit hard, because I had a big climb right out of town. My legs were protesting, but I'm past the point of listening to them. They will get me where I want to go. No point arguing. I stopped at No Business Knob Shelter for a standard snack break. It was one of the standard Tennessee jobs, with cinder block walls and a dilapidated wood floor. Lots of graffiti, kind of a prison feeling. Needless to say, I was glad to move on.

A gradual climb, a drop, a steep climb, a drop. Why couldn't I just keep the elelevation that I had accumulated? By the time the day was over, I had done approximately 5000 feet of climbing. Bleh. I really got my butt kicked today for the first time in a while. I've gotten to wondering if a zero in Hot Springs is on my horizon. On another note, when I crossed US Highway 19 West, I entered the domain of the Carolina Mountain Club, leaving that of the Tennessee Eastman Hiking Club. What does this mean for me? I have no idea. There's a privy at this shelter, though, so that's a start. All the other Tennessee shelters had a distinct lack thereof, making me wonder where to do my business. I'll be living large tomorrow morning! And I'm high up, around 5000 feet, so I can expect a cool night. On top of that, my weather forecast for the Smokies looks great! Please don't let it change! Life is looking good for this barnyard animal.

-Rooster

Pictures: sun returns to the trail; this is what a piped spring looks like, and it's a good thing to have.


1 comment:

  1. Hi Rooster!
    Maybe TN spends the $ on the piped springs for good cold water instead of the shelters/privies?
    The day's hike sounded severe with the elevation changes! You are Amazing to be doing so Awesome! How do you find the energy to create such beautifully written journal entries?
    Keep Hiking your Hike!
    Love,
    Sanity

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