Learning to Embrace the Rain
Hawk Mountain Shelter to Gooch Mountain Shelter: We woke up packed in the shelter like sardines. Some heavy rainstorms rolled in overnight, surrounding the area with sloppy mud and washouts.
I quickly understood why shelters were so greatly appreciated on trail. I felt as though I would be taking advantage of them as much as possible. They had full coverage AND picnic tables which felt like a luxury.
I watched as a hiker packed his gear early in the morning and walked straight into the cold rain. I couldn’t fathom it, yet felt really inspired by his confidence. I wondered if soon I would have the the same confidence because it seemed as if the rain turned me into a little bitch.
By the time I started walking it was foggy and cool. A misty day sprinkled with rain every so often, but wasn’t as bad as I expected. I enjoyed that there weren’t any leaves on the trees so I could get views of the rolling hills in the distance.
I heard from previous AT thru-hikers that the trail would have steep ascents and descents and that there wouldn’t be many gentle graded switchbacks. It was true. I would see a hill and go straight up. I would see the bottom of that hill and go straight down. It took the absolute wind out of me.
A few miles into my morning hike, Pink caught up to me so we cruised the rest of the way together. We only walked about 8 miles from Hawk Mountain to Gooch Mountain Shelter. I felt I could’ve kept going but didn’t want to push myself too hard in the beginning.
The shelter was fully packed by noon. We filled out the hiker log and ate lunch/dinner. Pink asked if he could have one of my macramé rings so I let him pick his favorite. He put it on his ring finger and I quickly noticed mine was on my ring finger, too. I joked, “Guess we’re trail husband and wife!”
We watched as the rest of the hikers rolled in. It was a cold, rainy rest of the afternoon. Day two and I felt as though I got the notorious experience of the AT.
This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek's ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!
To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.
What Do You Think?