Day 2 – Amicalola Lodge to Springer Mountain

Day two started at Amicalola Falls Lodge with a hearty “Happy Trails” from the front desk. I also broke the zipper on my backpack brain.

Started the Approach Trail, which is not considered part of the Appalachian Trail. I started at 9 a.m. and it was foggy and misting, which turned to rain, then sleet, and finally snow. I’m not sure if I missed any type of precipitation. The picture is from 1 p.m. on Feb. 20.

I stopped for water at Black Gap Shelter and met Lou from the United Kingdom. Lou was struggling, but I heard later that he had made it on to Springer.

This was the first time using my filtration system and it went well.
Toward the end of my hike that day, the trail was mostly obscured by snow and I could not find blazes, but I made it to Springer Mountain Shelter and was officially on the Appalachian Trail.

Blazes are the trail makers painted on trees to hopefully keep you from getting lost. White blazes mark the Appalachian Trail, blue blazes lead you to water and shelter, and there are more that I will identify along the way

I met a couple from Virginia and their dog, Bailey, and ended up with six people in the shelter. “Hiking with Braids,” a YouTuber, was with me here and at the next shelter. Check her out. I may be in the background. That night I gathered water again, used a privy for the first time, and made chicken fried rice and hot chocolate for dinner.

Day two I was happy with my Gore-Tex shoes that kept my feet dry and started making my list of things to send home.  I also got to practice my layering and unlayering, adding and removing rain gear, and especially the need to know where your gear is.

Unfortunately, the gentleman lost the first day I was on the Approach Trail was found deceased off trail near a waterfall.

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