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Appalachian Trail 2003 - Chelsea's Journals

Entry #23 - April 14, 2003

When Wee Willy and Pirate showed up @ the Wesser Bald Shelter last night, I was about ready to go and set up our tent rather than spend the night with those smelly longbeards. But, they turned out to be pretty nice guys, if a bit odd. Wee Willy is going to (or is) write a book that takes place before the big flood (Noah) and the story is full of dinosaurs, trolls & goblins. He says if he writes down your trail name, he’s likely to use it in his book as the name of a troll or goblin or whatever. O….K…!? Pirate was funny, but he didn’t say much. Just little jokes & remarks through teeth clenched around his pipe. Very Pirate-like, ha ha! The funniest (or should I say most disturbing) thing was waking up in the morning and seeing Wee Willy’s huge bowie knife set out right next to the head of his sleeping bag. Andy sure had a start rolling over and seeing that thing glowing next to him in the night! This after listening to his stories about Vietnam, etc. Well, we made it out alive and got going around 8 AM and trekked down to the NOC. It’s a pretty cool place on the Nantahala River where they have whitewater rafting, restaurants, cabins, an outdoor store, etc. We got some supplies & had lunch @ the River’s End Restaurant. Jersey ended up staying @ the bunkhouse tonight, I guess. I think he’s about the only person we know that we’re ahead of. We were hoping to catch up to some people, like Semi & Hepcat, but not sure if we’ll be able to. Tonight we’re camped at a spot just short of Grassy Gap, about 3 miles past NOC. There is a huge rock pile/cave up the hill from the site, and we’re hoping no bears or wild boars live up there. Julie from MI just showed up, too – we haven’t seen her since Blue Mtn Shelter.

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Preparing to Hike the Appalachian Trail?

Commonly used guides by A.T. thru-hikers include the Appalachian Trail Guides (published by the Appalachian Trail Conference), the Appalachian Trail Thru-Hiker's Companion, and the Appalachian Trail Data Book. The guide series includes a guide for each section, along with a series of trail maps. The Thru-Hiker's Companion has helpful info on towns, shelters, and water. The Data Book has basic distance info for road crossings, shelters, and other features. All are excellent tools for use during a long distance hike.




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