AT06 Francklin to NOC – Making New Friends

March 15 – 0

I wake up at 4, my roommate Rearview is snoring. I should know not to share a room with a stranger… Haha

We get ready to go to the 1st Baptist Church. The shuttle comes to pick us up at 7.15 and take us there. It was awesome !
For the past 17 years, they’ve been offering breakfast to AT hikers. Bacon, pancakes, fruits, coffee, juice…
The people are very nice, the atmosphere is amazing.

We share a great time with Clouds and Ripple, Half Pint. We also meet Bubbles, Boomerang, Rockstar (who carries a guitar and I met at the Southern terminus) and many others. If I tell those names, it because we will spend more time together in the future.

The church shuttle takes us back to the motel where I write my journal before going in town with Rearview and Half Pint.

We spend some time at the large board where thru hikers tag their names. Many other hikers are there too, and we exchange stories, laughs and pictures. It was a beautiful moment to share with everyone.

With my two companions of the day, we get some food at Gracious Plate (delicious!) before heading back to the motel where we spend some time chatting with the crew we met during breakfast.

Time to pack our bags for tomorrow, and to eat Mexican food and drink margarita.

March 16 – 11 miles

Timberwolf and his wife come to pick up Rearview and I to go to the 1st Baptist Church again.
Half Pint is here too and we all have breakfast together. She is going to take a few days off to develop her films, so we say goodbye.

I start hiking with the guys, but I quickly walk ahead.

After a while I need the bathroom… I am not in a mood to dig a hole, so when I see a sign for a shelter, Silet Bald, I follow the blue blaze to find it, and its privy.
I walk, walk and walk… Where is it ?!!
I realise that the shelter is 0.5 mile off trail ! Omg! It is the longest bathroom trip of my life !

I reach Wayah Tower where there are not only 1, but 2 trail magics !
After getting some snacks and a juice at the first one, I then go to the tower where Bird Whisperer and ShortCake are offering fruits, veggies and chips. I stay a while talking to them. They are very nice and fun to hang out with, and I know I’ve got only a mile left to the shelter.


When I reach my destination, Rearview is there (he passed me while I was hiking an extra mile to the privy…) and there are Bubbles, Boomerang, Rockstar and U-turn (a Danish guy who is hiking with them to Fontana).

I share my “chicken waffles chocolate bar” with everyone and talk about the weather with rearview.
There is a very cold night coming soon…

March 17 – 15.5 miles

I start walking with Rearview and Timberwolf, but I walk faster and end up being on my own soon.
It is an easy walk to the next shelter where I stop for a snack and the others catch up with me.

I resume my hike and decide to follow the blue blazes to Rocky Bald. It is worth it ! The climb on the rock is pretty cool, and the view is amazing!

A bit further, I reach Wesser Bald where I climb the tower. I love having a 360 view !

Time to get down the mountain. The walk along the mountain ridge is so nice ! I really enjoy it, and I keep looking around. When I get to the place called the Jump Off, I video call my friend Try-Try who told me it was one of her favourites spots.

All the way down, I get to A. Rufus Morgan Shelter, my final destination of the day.
Boomerang, Bubbles and Rockstar are there already.
I struggle to find a branch to hang my bear bag, so I hang it between two trees. It works as well !

I play some of Rockstar’s guitar and chat with everyone before heading to bed.

I’m only 1 mile from the NOC where we plan to rent a bunk house to avoid the cold night. It is 6 of us now, and the bunk house has 6 beds. Perfect !

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Comments 1

  • Steve : Apr 18th

    I truly enjoy your posts and pics. I look forward to future entries. Enjoy your journey.


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