Saturday, April 30, 2016

Day 7: Albert Mountain

4/27: Mile 95.3- Winding Stair Gap
Mile 95.3 - 109.8 (14.5 miles)

The day started out great with a beautiful sunrise and even a view point so we could escape the rhododendron long enough to actually see it (i.e. 5 ft).

More views as our climb began in earnest. There were blooming flowers and even some rocky cliff edge walking.

And then the toughest bit of climbing so far. The last 500 or so feet up to the Albert Mountain Fire tower were filled with rocky scrambling, not to mention hot and steep.

But pretty darn cool at the top, plus we made friends with other hikers enjoying the view

Looking out, the haze might be from some of the nearby fires. It's been a dry year with a tad too much arson for my taste. HoT Springs and the Shenandoah are on fire and will hopefully reopen soon.

Do panoramas work on this blog? It was quite the view.

This may not be my first time but what hike isn't complete with awkward smiles at the 100 mile mark?

You could climb almost all the way up... Then back to hiking.

Magical streams

Lots of little wildlife

And so many almost views. We pushed on to Winding Stair Gap and had our hitch to Franklin before Rest Stop even sat down.

Relaxing, hiding from the heat and then hiding from the pouring rain and thunder. Not a bad day.

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