Hiking Trail Journals
Appalachian Trail 2003 -
#31 - April 22, 2003
PM Last night went from one of the best to absolutely
the most horrible. When I got into my sleeping bag, the
older couple next to me said, Just to warn you we
snore quite a bit! Well, OK, thats fine. You have
to put up with all kinds of snoring @ the shelters. Then,
just as everyone was settling in, one of a group of 3 high school
seniors who were also on the top bunk says, Just to let
everyone know, this kid sleeping next to me has night terrors. We
all were just kind of like OK, whatever. It didnt
take long to fall asleep, even with the snorers.
next thing I know, I was yanked from a deep sleep into the pitch
black by someone yelling bloody murder. I sat bolt upright, not
being able to see anything and I was yelling too, I think. What
the hell is going on!?!?! My first thought was someone
was being attacked by a bear, or God knows what! It took me awhile
to remember the warning we got when going to sleep.
I could hear one of the kids comforting the yeller. Well, there
was no way in hell I could sleep after that. I checked my watch
and it was before 1 AM. I lay there for probably an hour, when
he started again. This time it wasnt just yelling, but
sounded like he was speaking in tongues or something! I laid
there the rest of the night, unable to sleep, thinking that any
moment I was about to have the crap scared out of me again!!!
That was it for the night, though, and it was around 5 AM when
I started dozing off again. What a total nightmare. In fact,
I guess it is nightmares every night. People had witnessed
it at other shelters, as those kids have been out a week or whatever.
Needless to say, I wanted to get as far away from that shelter
as possible, and guess what? We ended up doing about 20 miles
today! We made up for our lazy day yesterday, and we should be
out of the Smokies tomorrow. Its too bad that its
been so foggy, cause we really missed a lot of great views today.
Also, we caught up with Hepcat and Radar at this shelter (Cosby
Knob) tonight, too. Actually, were all tenting (along w/many
others) because the place is so full. Tomorrow well probably
hit Mountain Momas to resupply a bit and maybe take a shower!
Then its off to Hot Springs, maybe by Saturday Yippee!
I forgot to add that when leaving Ice Water Springs Shelter in
the morning, there were 2 Cokes left in the spring, so we took
one. We realized wed feel dumb showing up @ the next place
w/a Coke & everyone would be jealous. So, we downed it in
about 2 seconds on the trail & burped like pigs! :^)
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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.