Raven Cliff Falls Trail
Day Hike #1
Today was an absolutely beautiful day, perfect for getting my feet wet on the trail. I don’t know if completing one day hike constitutes calling oneself a hiker, but I do feel really good about finally doing it. I went to Raven Cliff Falls Trail, in White County, Georgia. It was an hour and half drive from my house, which to me is great.
My main objective today was to see how well my dogs would hold up on a trail setting. They’ve conquered the few miles within Stone Mountain Park, and they seemed to enjoy it. However, I was unsure about my youngest puppy. Desmond is a seven-month-old pit bull that is notorious for pitching a fit on a walk. He will stop and lay on the ground with all four legs stretched out. When I ask him to, “please come on” he looks at me with his beautiful brown eyes and begins to crawl. It’s so utterly frustrating. With the success of today’s walk I am confident that with more practice the two of them will do great on the trail.
I carried my Kelty TraiLogic pack with me. I initially wanted to carry 30 lbs of miscellaneous gear with me, but at the last minute I decided against it. I packed 2 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, two bottles of water, the REI Quarter Dome 3 tent, which I have yet to try out, my stove set, and a book. I also wore my Merrell trail shoes for the first time. My next day hike will be the Springer Mountain loop, which is 4.75 miles. At that time I will try my Gregory Cairn 58. I did not love the Kelty like I was hoping to. For the distance that I will be traveling on the AT I really think I need more space in the bag to start. Then I had a hard time getting comfortable in the shoulder straps. If I tightened them enough to feel secure then the pack was too high on my back and the frame would rub into my neck. I also noticed that as I walked the hip belt slid above my hipbone. This was not uncomfortable for this short walk. The only issue I have is the belt is tightened as tight as it will go and if I were to lose any weight at all on the trail then my shoulders would be supporting the bulk of the weight not my core. The salesman forewarned me of this at the store, but I was pretty set on trying the pack anyways. As for my shoes, they have no support, as I was walking I thought I would’ve been more comfortable in my Nike minimalist running shoes. I don’t know if I was pounding the surface really hard or if there was just no cushion, but I really felt every step. I will try them with a cushion insole and thicker socks before I try another pair of shoes.
If you can get to Raven Cliff Falls Trail you will have a fantastic time. It is a dog friendly trail. We met several today. The scenery is beautiful; you can hear the waterfall the entire walk. It is a very peaceful and enchanting place to walk through.
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