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Appalachian Trail 2003 - Chelsea's Journals

Entry #30 - April 21, 2003

5:30 PM – Woke up very early off & on to rain & thunderstorms. I was SO glad to be in the shelter.  Slept in for a bit listening to the pounding drops on the roof.  Eventually crawled out of our bags between 7 & 8. Andy got some fuel from Rumbler, since he was headed into Gatlinburg & could resupply.  The rain let up a bit & we left the shelter around 9:45 – the first ones to leave for once!

Had only a 4 mile hike to Newfound Gap – kind of a rest area & the only place in the Smokies where the trail crosses a road.  Lots of people hike into Gatlinburg from there.  We were tempted (well, mainly Andy kept mentioning it) to go into town because of the rain, but I refused to give in.  We’ve been planning our next town stay to be in Hot Springs, and maybe we’ll even have a zero day.  Used the restrooms, which is always fun – you know, flush toilets, running water and mirrors. Was still raining a bit, so just decided to go another 4 or so miles to Ice Water Spring Shelter.  Got here and there was only one other person. 

Now, however, there are about 30 people here!  It’s the most I’ve seen so far.  A lot of the people that came in had been in Gatlinburg.  A couple named Kodiak & Sassy brought in hot dogs, little Debbies & pop for everyone! We gorged ourselves, thankful for the good food after missing out on town.  Also, we heard from others there was Trail Magic @ Newfound Gap that we must have missed.  We were bummed, but the hot dogs made up for it.  Now I have a gut ache, just like I’d been @ the buffet or something. 

Ah, the joys of stomach shrinkage…

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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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