Days 1-3 on the Appalachian Trail

Day Zero – One mile up to the lodge

I got up at 4 am in Utah for my flight at 8 to Atlanta! My nerves were higher than I realized and very much in disbelief that the day finally came for me to leave everything behind and hit the trail!

Well sort of … I landed in Atlanta and was picked up by a 2021 thru hiker named Georgia. I owe a lot to her because she got me from Atlanta to Amicalola in one piece and gave me so very useful tips for the first section of the trail!

When we got here I met two other thru hikers who were headed out as well. However, my plans were much different. I registered and received my tag of 2814 for the 2023 AT hiker season, repacked my bag, snapped a few pictures at the arch thanks to Georgia! And we parted ways.

I was amazed at how green everything was especially after the winter we were having in Utah this year. I made it up to the pond and then further up to the steps.

I must say those steps were my first taste of yup this is happening. Though I made it up them fairly quick with my pack in 35 minutes. Everyone I encountered even wanted to stop and ask what I was doing and thought I was nuts carrying everything up.

I got to the lodge. Grabbed a decent sized salad and some chicken for dinner, then went out onto the balcony and enjoyed some beautiful views and a sunset to boot!

Day 1 – AF Lodge to Hawk Mountain

What an amazing day I first want to add. However I figured out real quick I made two rookie mistakes when I made it to camp that night. Too many miles the first day and I messed up my miles calculation. More on that later.

I sprang into action crushing the ascend to Springer. I made it there in about 3.5 hours!

I really enjoyed this first day and had a pep in my step and was crushing miles. However, those unsuspecting long miles bit me in the butt overnight with massive cramping due to the close to 17 mile day.

When I got to the shelter the community was thriving there while I kept to myself, made dinner, and wanted to get some much needed sleep. I conked out about 6pm and was awoken by thunder and heavy rain.

Day 2 – Hawk Mountain – Woody Gap

The name of the game was Pain and Rain. My feet, calves, and shins were throbbing, but because the day prior I found out I miscalculated my mileage and was needing to do a 23.5 mile day for day 2 I was in a rush to get to Mountain crossing.

However, the rain had other plans for me. It cleared up around 1pm to where I could finally use my cooking set up. I made lunch and got to talking with 4 others who were heading north just like me.

I ended up taking a fall on a huge slab of rocks and twisting my knee pretty bad. So I settled for a 12.5 mile day and a pick up to Above the Clouds hostel where I would nurse it back and to hopefully hit the trail again the next day.

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