My Day Hike Before My Thru Hike

Our New Home

Today we arrived at Amicalola Falls State Park where we officially registered as thru hikers, got our passport stamped, and weighed or packs on the “truth teller.”


Even though we are starting our hike from Springer Mountain, we didn’t want to miss the falls, so we decided to tackle the infamous stairs, and hike the 2 miles up and back from the visitor center to the lodge. Even though it was only a 2 mile walk and we weren’t wearing our packs, it felt good just to be present on the trail and focus on what was around me: the smell of the creek, the wildflowers beginning to bloom, and the feel of the breeze on my face. This is going to be my home for the next six months. As I write this, I’m sitting in the hotel with House Hunters playing in the background. Today, I felt like someone on the show: getting a glimpse of my potential future home and spending a few moments trying to picture myself in the space.

Being Two Feet From a Barn Owl Counts as Trail Magic


When we got to the top, we had a delicious lunch at the lodge and we were lucky enough to catch a “Birds of Prey” talk and see 3 owls, a red tailed hawk, and a vulture up close. It was such a wonderful and unexpected moment, that I forgot for a minute to feel anxious about what we are about to undertake.

Final Thoughts

I keep waiting to have that defining clarifying moment when it hits me that tomorrow we are starting the trail. I feel like I’m supposed to feel different, but I don’t. My mom keeps asking how I’m feeling but I don’t really know what to say. I just can’t help but feel that tomorrow is just like any other day. And really, it is. This is my life now, this is my home now, and this is the new normal. Tomorrow I’m going to wake up and start walking because that is what I’m supposed to do, and that’s good enough for now.

See you up the trail!

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