Day 9 … Sunday, February 28
Saying good-bye to my wife once again. These “steps” mark the trail for about the first climb and then the trail turns into a natural, rugged path. I left Unicoi Gap at nine and arrived at Addis Gap at 3:45 pm.
The Swag of the Blue Ridge is an area at mile marker 62.1 on the trail and elevation of 3,475′. It is a pass which marks the swag between Tray Mountain and Dismal Mountain.
The hike was approximately 11.5 miles and a relatively uneventful day on the trail. However, it was the first day without my navigator SlimTim. I will miss him, he was a good trail mate. I did get to see Catherine and my MIL, Alice. We all had a good time in Helen, Georgia where SlimTim and I ate BIG hamburgers at Big Daddy’s!
I left Addis Gap at 9:00 this morning, arriving at Dick’s Gap 12:10 p.m. It was another short day for me because once again I didn’t sleep well last night. Strong storms and rain are forecast for tomorrow and I plan to sit out the downpour. After this point on the trail, I won’t have any hostel or cabin/hotel options for a good 40 miles.
Something for the “it’s a small world category” I met a gentleman today who is a firefighter from DeKalb County Georgia. His name is Eric Chastain. We had a nice conversation during which he mentioned he is a firefighter. Something in common and a small world indeed!
After my short hike today I decided to spend the night at a place called “Top of Georgia Hostel and Hiking Center”. This place is nice and clean with very good staff. If (!) it rains tomorrow (forecasted 100% chance!) I plan to go into Hiawassee.
I’ll be bunking at this hostel, my first on the trail.
The nice folks at the hostel gave me scrubs to wear while they are washing my clothes. They clearly know how to take care of hikers!
This is my second zero hike day but I hope to spread them out in the future. As the post title says, I am now hiking solo, but not alone.
From The Trail,
God’s unseen presence comforts me,
I know He’s always near;
And when life’s storms besiege my soul,
He says, “My child, don’t fear.” —D. De Haan