Sorry everyone, no service from the shelter last night. Looks like my luck with AT&T has finally run out.
Views views views!
Hello all, it's Breeze. Today was a great day! The rain stopped early in the morning and we were able to get out of camp quickly with dry gear. We hiked with a really awesome 2012 thru hiker named Day Pack for most of the morning. He got his name because the base weight (weight without food and water) is 8 lbs so he looks like a day hiker. He was stuffed full with awesome information and advice about the trail. I wish we could have hiked longer with him, but he was so fast he quickly left us in a pile of dust. Apparently he completed his thru hike in 4 months! Just insane.
About a half a mile from our campsite this morning was a .2 mile side trail up to the summit of Siler Bald. The side trail was extremely steep, and under normal situations, Wendy and I wouldn't have checked it out. However, we were told in Franklin by Baltimore Jack that the view from Siler was one of the best in the South, so we had to give it a look. The 5,216 foot bald did not disappoint! The mountain gave us a near 360° view! The pictures below were all taken from Siler Bald, and was definitely worth the extra time.
From Siler Bald we headed directly to Wayah Bald. That mountain had another awesome view waiting for us, and even had a stone fire tower where we could get a better look at our surroundings. My camera stayed out nearly all day. Wendy and I ate our lunch up there, gazing out at our first real view of the monstrous Smoky Mountains. It was quite a sight.
Today was also awesome because we met so many thru hikers that we hadn't previously met. Let's see if I can remember everyone: Grey Loon, Stretch, Siren, Saint Nick, Snafu, Long Island, and his dog Game. We hiked the afternoon with Long Island. While in Hiawassee, Long Island stumbled on an obviously stray dog. After some deliberation, he decided to bring the dog thru hiking with him! He bought the dog a pack and took him to the Vet. The dog's name stands for GA to ME. Pretty awesome. And hey look! As I'm typing this, the nine year old girl, Pink Panther, and her group showed up! We haven't seen then since before Franklin at Plum Orchard Shelter. Looks like it'll be a great night, too.
It looks like everyone at our shelter has the same schedule as us, so maybe we'll stick with them for a while.
Until next time!