Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Iron Mt. Gap to Hughes Gap

Day One: 4.1                                                                           Outcasts Total Miles: 2229.9
Iron Mt. Gap to Greasy Creek Gap

Day Two: 5.3
Greasy Creek Gap to Hughes Gap

Total Miles: 9.4

This time we used the shuttle service from Mountain Harbour in Roan Mt. Tennessee. As we drove into the mountains we could see the snow at the tops. They were calling for flurries with an additional inch of snow possible. We started out in 3-6 inches of snow heading our way to Greasy Creek Gap. 

We set up camp and gathered firewood as the snow began to fall. It was supposed to get down to 19 degrees tonight. We got our campfire going and ate dinner as the snow continued to fall. By bed time we had to knock the snow off our tarps. Through the night the snow kept falling. Every time we got up to use the bathroom there was more snow. Finally by morning we had an additional 12 inches of snow. It was still snowing.

We got on the trail and started plowing our way through two foot drifts and knocking the snow off branches as they hung across our trail. There was 6-8 inches of snow on the branches. It was a powdery snow so that did help. We stopped at the Clyde Smith Shelter to have a snack and thaw out our bladder hoses.

From the shelter we had 6.4 miles to go to get to our next camp at Ash Gap. It wasn't looking good for time. As we continued to battle the snow we were making slower and slower progress as well as getting more tired. Knowing the snow was not going anywhere and a good possibility that it would get worse as we climbed Roan Mt. we decided to call it at Hughes Gap Road. We called for the shuttle and they came and got us. Luckily they had plowed the road on the side he was coming from.