Week #21: followup

by ambermae

Yes, we walked on the Appalachian Trail! It wasn’t the few hours I was hoping for, but we were there. The inn we were staying in had a very thorough guidebook which I studied extensively. We even brought it with us. Our problem was that we decided in advance that we would walk on the section we had crossed on the road. This turned out to be a very bad idea. Our section climbed almost 2,000 feet straight from the parking area. We made it up about 600 feet in a mile but I couldn’t made it any further. The worst part was that when we got to our stopping point there was a forest service road with a truck parked there! I bet it didn’t have to drive up a dozen switchbacks.

Here is a photo at our turnaround point:

Appalachian Trail

I was too demoralized to get the truck in the photo.

The very first (and kind of only) person we met on the trail was a thru-hiker who had started in Georgia on April 7th. He was crazy. He told us that when he got to Maine he was going to ride his bike back to Texas, and then he had two marathons scheduled this winter. Maybe you have to be a little crazy to hike the whole trail at once.

It turns out that if we had just gone the opposite direction from the parking area we would have descended 200 feet and then had a nice, gentle walk along a river to a trail shelter. Maybe next time.

We were a bit disappointed that we didn’t get to see any kind of view for all of our climbing effort, so we took a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway where I snapped this photo:

Blue Ridge Parkway

Much better.