Friday, January 11, 2019
Day One: 3.0 Outcasts Total Miles: 2327
Wilbur Dam Road to Spring
Day Two: 8.5
Spring to Iron Mt. Shelter
Day Three: 11.1
Iron Mt. Shelter to US 421
Day Four: 11.0
US 421 to Campsite
Day Five: 4.0
Campsite to Damascus
Total Miles: 37.6
This hike we used Sundog Outfitters for our shuttle service. We parked at the free parking lot at the library and they took us to Wilbur Dam Road to start our hike. It was a warm day and we got to the first spring right at dark. We got us a campfire going and enjoyed a pleasant evening.
We got up today which turned out to be overcast all day long with rain on and off all day. This whole section of trail to Damascus has wonderful views on the average day. Not today! We were in the clouds. We did get to see a couple of deer on one hill and a couple more at the Iron Mt. Shelter. There was a lot of downed trees and branches from a storm which we got to go around or through.
We got to the shelter for the night. The wind got to hollering so we didn't bother with a fire. Marco and Troy stayed in the shelter with Micky and I hung my hammock out in the wind. It blew all night and into the morning. The stars were amazing tonight!
The wind was blowing still this morning and blew all day. It didn't get into the higher 20's today. The sky was clear and we got lots of views as we hiked. We made it to US 421 and camped out on the roadbed heading to a cemetery out of the wind. The temperature dropped as the evening went on, freezing our water. We enjoyed a nice campfire and saw the stars again!
It snowed all night, but never accumulated anywhere. When we got up the frost was frozen in the air so you looked out and everywhere there were sparkles floating around. It was a beautiful morning. We could hear the wind blowing constantly all night long through the gap. We were grateful to be able to get out of that.
We battled the wind most of the day today. It never did get out of the teens for temperature. We enjoyed the none windy side of the mountain anytime that we got it. We found a place to camp just before the Tennessee /Virginia boarder. We set up camp and got the fire going to warm up. It was cold tonight, but not long for us. We enjoyed the evening around the fire listening to the coyotes and owls. When we went to bed there was frost on the inside of our tarps. Not a good sign!
Today was the day of celebration. We made it to the Tennessee/Virginia boarder or for Troy the Georgia/Virginia boarder. Troy only agreed to hike the state of Georgia when we first started on the AT. He said he agreed to hike to Neal's Gap and I tricked him into agreeing to hike the state. Any which way, I never let him know that we left Georgia so he just thought that it was a very LONG state. Now I have to renegotiate with him to hike to at least the quarter way mark of the trail. We will see.
We hiked into the town of Damascus and had us a good greasy burger at the Damascus Diner. I highly recommend this restaurant.
For some odd reason the winter snow storm missed us and the snow was coming in tonight. That is unusual for sure!