4/3 – 4/9
It's been a wild week hiking north. We covered plenty of miles, experienced world class trail magic, created new friendships, and inspired others to pick up trash along their hike. We are staying with Les and Cathy Murphy who have opened their mountain home to us. We're looking forward to hiking in the Great Smokey Mountain National Park next week.
As of right now we have covered 110 miles of the Appalachian Trail. The trail has been challenging in many aspects. Rocky trails and rainy days have led to technical/muddy trail conditions. We often stare off at beautiful views and it's rare we pass up a stream for a quick splash. The days are getting longer and the trail is getting more challenging as we approach the Smokeys (highest section of the AT) but we are playing it smart by taking our time and letting our bodies fully adjust to the trail.
Whether your hiking Northbound or Southbound many hikers have the privilege to experience “Trail Magic”. Trail Magic is essentially any form of good fortune you experience while hiking. This good fortune can range from getting a ride into town to receiving a full course meal randomly in the middle of the woods. We've had the good fortune of experiencing both of these forms of trail magic so far. It's hard to put into words the generosity we've already experienced on the trail. As I write this post Goose, Spice and I are literally moaning from overstuffed bellies. Thanks to Les and Cathy Murphy we have had two absolutely amazing dinners and breakfast at their gorgeous mountain home just outside of Franklin, North Carolina. In the midst of experiencing Trail Magic you can find yourself questioning whether not what you experience is real. I guess fairy tales are real.
The only thing better than Trail Magic and the trail itself are the people you meet. Hikers from all over the world come to Georgia with the dream to hike the Appalachian Trail. Being twelve days into the hike we have had the opportunity to see the same group of folks day in and day out. The friendships we've already developed are priceless. Sharing stories about our lives before the trail and hearing everyone's different reasons for hiking has been refreshing to say the least. Everyday we look forward to seeing our fellow hikers at upcoming campsites and shelters.
Packing It Out is staying positive and motivated for the coming weeks. Goose, Spice and myself can't thank you all enough for the support and encouragement we've received so far. As of right now we have collected right at 120 pounds of trash from the Appalachian Trail. I will be updated the progress tab as soon as I have access to a desktop computer. Thanks again for the support.