Week 1: Amicalola to Hiawassee
A shower and clean laundry has never felt so good! Jetta and I have made it the first 69.6 miles on the AT and we are happily taking a nero at Top of Georgia Hostle in Hiawassee GA. Our first week has been outstanding and I am so proud of Jetta and myself. The only time I have cried so far is when I turned around and walked away from my husband at the top of Springer Mountain. Thank you dear for being my support person and for everything you do! The weather has been just about perfect for our first 9 days on trail and there have been no major mishaps. I am posting from my phone so for simplicity’s sake I will keep it short but there are some highlights to mention.
Consider this your warning!
I chose to start my hike at Amicalola Falls for several reasons but probably the leading reason was I wanted to tackle the infamous stairs. The Approach Trail trail is an extra 8.8 miles of walking before you even get to Springer Mountain, but it’s worth it in my opinion if you get to be a bad ass by climbing the 604 steps up to the top of the falls and see the beautiful view. So, don’t do what my husband and I did and miss the start of the Approach Trail and go wandering up some other trail no one has heard about and come out on top of the falls missing the stairs and the falls completely. Never ANYWHERE did I come across any warnings about this in all the research I did before the trail and I know I can’t be the first to have done this. When you come thru the iconic arch behind the visitor center, take a hard left toward the Max Epperson Shelter if you want to do the steps at the falls.
Take your time at the summit of Springer
You are about to embark on a journey of a lifetime. Take a moment to revel in how awesome you are to get this far.
The people rock!
Just wait until your first trail magic. It is a beautiful thing to be tired and sore and thirsty and starving and come out of the woods to find a group of people dedicating their day to taking care of your ends and just so happy to do it. Trail magic is the shit!
The hiker bond is something special too. So many people I hardly know have offered to help me on trail and everyone is looking out for each other. Be prepared for what you are getting into when you set out on a thru hike but also know you will be surrounded by people who have your back.
That’s all for now. I hope to post more in a couple weeks from a real computer.
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