Jun 01 2008

Georgia AT Trail Day 1 (Springer – 3 Forks)

Sunay 6/1/08
Trip: 5.77 miles
Elevation: 3750ft (max) 2650ft (min) 631ft (total accent)
Time: 2h 21m (moving) 1h 53m (stopped)
Moving Avg: 2.5 mph
Temperature: 70 F
Wind: Light breeze
Conditions: Partly Cloudy, no precipitation
Pack Weight: ~40lbs (2L water, 7 days food)

Our first day was a relatively short hike. Mel dropped us off at the FSR 42 parking lot on the back side of Springer Mountain, we got our gear on, said our good-byes and started our ascent to the top of Springer (and the AT Southern Terminus). Having missed all the rain earlier that day, the trail was slightly muddy but in good shape. Water apparently wasn’t going to be a problem. Doubling back, we headed downhill for the rest of the afternoon towards 3 Forks.

Today’s goal was a getting settled into our daily routine on our way to 3 Forks while figuring out what kind of pace we could maintain with the heavier pack loads (this was our first multi-day, strenious hike over several days).

I weighed in at 218.5 lbs (boxers only) so we’ll see what happens to my body after 4-5 days of heavy punishment.

6/1/08 Journal entry:
Man what a great start to our hike. Got to the trail head @ 5:45pm but missed a rain storm that passed through earlier. Temps were perfect and the trail to 3 Forks wide and level.

Camping right now next to Frick Creek – wide, fast running water – will be easier to top off tomorrow morning. We have the camp site all to our selves, even found a nice spectre line with a carabiner still attached – Scott thinks he can get it unstuck from the tree it was apparently used as a bear-bag for.

Scott is working with his new hammock (Henneesee Ultra-light), it’s pretty cool but requires some work to get set up and adjusted properly. He’ll be pro by Friday.

Meet some nice people at Stover Creek Shelter but only stayed long enough to cook – we moved on a mile down the trail to camp at Frick Creek without all the crowds. 3 college buddies headed to Virgina, a College couple on break till August trying to go as far as they can in 3 months, and 1 slightly crazy lady telling stories about a black bear that stole all her summer sausages while she was setting up in the shelter. College couple confirmed a black bear and cub sighting on their way up the approach trail so who knows …

New moon tonight so it’s pitch black outside and moths the size of small bats constantly buzzing around our head lamps. Awoke around 11pm to Scott yelling in a slight panic – apparently one side of his hammock tie-off was to a dead tree (didn’t look like it at dusk) – it broke off cleanly dumping Scott about 3 feet onto his butt! Luckily, no injuries just some shock and the fear he was getting attacked by a bear lol ….

Elevation Profile
Springer Mountain – 3 Forks

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