9.0 Miles, 26,196 steps, 320 stories climbed
Day one is in the books! I hiked the approach trail from Amicalola Falls. A rough way to start, over 600 stairs in the first mile with another 1000′ incline the rest of the way.
The weather was in the mid 40s with a constant fog and drizzle (it is now pouring but I’m in the shelter right now, so it’s rather soothing).
The falls were a very beautiful sight, the pictures aren’t that great thanks to the dew but I’m glad I do the approach. For the most part, the trail was muddy, slowing things down but I still managed to reach my goal of the Springer Mt. shelter.
While hiking the falls, I met an Indian gentleman day-hiking the falls with his family. He asked me how far I was going and then marveled when I old him Maine. He shook my hand and wished me luck and as I was about to part, he gave me a big thumbs up and said to me “This is the life!” I have to agree (let’s see if I still feel that way when I wake up all stiff).
Not too far from the Springer Mt. Shelter there was a very eerie sight and probably not the best thing to see on the first day. I came across a hiking pole alone in the middle of the trail. Then I came across an abandoned backpack filled with gear. I looked around and didn’t see anyone. Later on at the shelter everyone else had seen the same thing and even worse there was a shelter right by it filled with abandoned camping gear. Authorities were notified but none of us have any idea what the hell happened. I really hope everything is okay. This was a humbling reminder that we are not invincible. Still, we need to hike on.
Now I’m off to stuff my face and relax with a good book and some music. Good night everyone!