Day 1 – Let’s Get it Started

Day 1 started around 9am. I was able to catch up on a little extra sleep that was lacking from the day prior. Although I’m still adjusting to my sleep system and the nights sleep was “toss-y turn-y”.

I made it up the 1.7 miles up to Springer Mountain (the official start of the AT) rather quickly. I spent about an hour taking in the views and recording my next segment for Trail Correspondents season 4 (shameless plug) and bidding social media adeu for the next couple of days as cellular service is expected to be sparse.

I hiked solo for the majority of the day. I trudged into Black Gap the night prior feeling beat. Today I felt surprisingly strong. My joints felt fresh for roughly 90% of the day. My troubleshooting of the prior days hot spots in my trailrunners (duct tape and gauze inside the heel of my shoes) held up much better than expected. However I fully expect that to need patching up again at some point (but until then, wheeeeeee!)

I ran into Thomas at Long Creek Falls. Thomas is also thru-hiking and is from Munich, Germany. I again changed into my Chacos and hiked the final 3 miles to Hawk Mountain Shelter.

Random thought of the day: I’m considering introducing myself to people with a new accent each day. Will report back if that comes to fruition.

Last nights campfire was quite the bonding experience and I’ve decided every shelter stop needs a campfire to end the night. However tonight’s fire was complicated by damp wood and required more attention to keep lit than it was worth. But I’m stubborn and kept feeding it until I turned in for the night.

Overall today felt good. I did a I felt strong (despite my knee currently throbbing) and the camaraderie on the trail is strong. Everyone is super friendly and encouraging and comes from all walks of life. I ended my first official day on the trail with a little over 10.5 miles.

Stow away in my pack and stay turned for day 2 on the Appalachian Trail

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