Mile: 207.1 - 219.9 (12.8 miles)
When we wake up the sky is still gray but there are glimpses of sun. Unfortunately the road we need to get back to the gap is currently closed due to ice and snow. Which means a morning of twiddling my thumbs.
On our way out of town I magically see Funsize across the street coming into town. I hiked with him last year on the CDT and it's great to see a familiar face. We make a u-turn and end up catching up over food. I'm in a great mood heading back to the trail.
We have a hitch in less than 5 minutes. A sweet couple who in 2 years are both retiring from the postal service and are in town at an RV fair researching their retirement plans. We pull up to a gray parking lot, our drivers thermometer tells us it's a toasty 42 degrees outside. Yay...
The first shelter is Icewater Springs and I'm more than happy to take a break from the cold.
We head back out with another hiker and start enjoying views. The Smokies are actually letting us see a bit, whole mountains not just glimpsed through the trees are a treat. The trail has us actually on the ridge which is extra beautiful and fun.
My umbrella is gold put here,it's not snowing but it might as well be. Every gust of wind showers me with melting rain and snow. I love this umbrella, it doesn't hurt that it says Silver Shadow on it and I can pretend I'm a superhero battling evergreens as I stumble down the trail.
This lookout was named something bunion, bunions guys? I think we could come up with a prettier name than all that.
I love that I can see things! And that I'm out of that cloud lurking behind me.
Pack covers are a fashion statement out here, visible from miles away
It trying to be sunny
We are a little short of the shelter but it's getting cold and there just aren't places to camp. So here goes, stealth camping in the snow. Not something I ever imagined I this trail.
Cold toes? Isn't that what mittens are for. Ultralight is all about multi use. Here's to hoping it's nothing like my last frozen night sleeping on snow.
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