Max Patch to Hotsprings

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On Friday, June the 29th 2018

Angie and I embarked on an amazing adventure. We were to hike 20.6 miles on the AT (Appalachian Trail)

Starting at Max Patch a 4600-foot bald cleared in the 1800s It has 360-degree views that seem to go on forever.

All good adventures start with margaritas.

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The ride up was pretty amazing even getting lost was fun we stopped at one waterfall and after taking a picture I turned around and a park ranger had snuck up on us he was sitting in his vehicle about 3 feet from us as I turned around. How did he do that?  We spoke for awhile Angie took his picture. We saw him several times after this he was the one who got us back on the right path when we were lost.

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Then it was on to the trail.

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The hike up was short less than a mile and the views from the top of Max Patch were amazing!

The top was full of people enjoying the sunset, tents popping up everywhere we claimed our spot in the grass. We witnessed a wedding

 

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We camped on the top of Max Patch I was worried about bear so I did kike back down below the tree line and hang our food bag. We were a little concerned about a storm moving in but it only really gave us a good cloud show

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We had a wonderful evening followed by sound sleep when we woke up we had this.

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Then we ate breakfast and prepared for the real hike breaking in our equipment and getting used to our loads we stopped by Roaring creek shelter. We met a great family here from Charlotte a couple, their best friend and their teenage daughter they were headed to max patch to renew there wedding vows to celebrate 25 years the guy teased Angie hard about bears, mountain lions, and tall mountains.                                                      We left the shelter made it just a little way and took the wrong turn the trail kept getting smaller and smaller we went maybe a quarter of a mile before we realized something was up this was the only navigational error of the trip, lots of downhill on this section.

Then came the first mountain up to the walnut mountain shelter.  Angie was not happy with the mountain we stopped a lot. I have read about this shelter being among the worst on the Appalachian Trail. I hope so, I would not like to see any worse, this place was trashed out, debris on the ground, people had left clothes and an umbrella random tent parts. the shelter log book spoke of the evilest mice on the trail. We did eat lunch, well I did it was a currie that Angie did not like and even I could only do part of. We did meet the only people we would see after the roaring fork shelter here two girls from Raleigh that were day hiking that section with their mon shuttling to hot springs at night we would meet them again on Sunday, they let us look at a map they had that showed elevation. it showed one more mountain, buff mountain then it would be almost all downhill to hot springs. ( it lied but it did encourage us) Angie was a ball of fire after this we made it up the mountain. not a scenic bald like Max patch but a pile of rocks on top we walked past nice campsites looking for water. the bugs this time of year were horrible in your eyes, in your mouth, ears and if you stopped to try to take a break it was a hundred times worse.

 

Miss Angie says Max Patch all the way to Hot Springs on the AT (Appalachian Trail ) such a major accomplishment. It was so hot and sweaty the entire time with no bath since Friday. There were moments that we didn’t have any water for a few miles, but for the most part, we got water from the springs, so we ended up a little dehydrated but feeling very proud that we finished all the way through. Starved and smelly LOL oh and super sore. I hiked the last 10 miles with a bum knee but I sucked it up and proud that I did!!
We did not see any snakes or any Wildcats but we did smell bear about 25 different times and a few huge bear scat (poop)

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Angie Moore Moore and I had one of the most amazing summer adventures yesterday.
A ride down the french broad river ending up on love road on the paint creek corridor, where we had a wonderful picnic lunch at the paint rock cliffs. We spread a blanket on a perfect rock, made tomato and basil sandwiches, chips, drinks in our wacky flamingo cups,

Life is good and summer is easy! We go to lean back on a rock just bask in the goodness all of the sudden Angie screams my heart drops looking around it was a nest of ants and we had made them mad! could have been much worse I guess, it could have been bees. We move over a few feet and finish our lunch then wade in the creek a bit to cool off.

An incredible bike ride five miles up the road past cool log cabins, roaring waterfalls, lots of wildflowers and swimming holes, on days like this you need swimming holes! The ride back down was much faster wind in our hair, holding our hands above our heads fully in the moment,

Then we drove back to hot springs spa where we had the perfect hot tub right beside the french broad river. We were sitting in the hot tub with a mister above our head, the sun setting on the circling swallows above the river again perfection.
We met a very interesting couple as we sat by the fire drying off ( we always seem to meet the most interesting people)
It was dark by the time we made it to Iron Horse Station, a very old inn and restaurant for a great vegetarian supper.

On the way home, we drove up to mill ridge overlooking the fields. The waxing moon rising behind venus. You could see the silhouette of the trees along the edge of the field. I turned the car off and rolled down the windows. We were then treated with the best firefly display I have seen yet! Thousands of glittering specks of light dancing to a summer night, it was truly magical. The whole day was!!!!!

PS all these amazing photos were Angie’s thank you for documenting!

Epic Roan

Wow, that was an epic adventure! I had been trying to do 14-mile section hike on the Appalachian Trail -Carver Gap on Roan Mountain down to 19E for a few weeks now but the weather or my health has held me up, last week Jesse agreed to go with me. We got to the Carver gap trailhead around 6:00pm Friday. We were going to go the opposite way and camp at roan high knob shelter Friday night and begin this hike on Saturday morning but with impending bad weather on Sunday we started towards 19E on Friday evening. We had a great sunset hike we made it about 2.5 miles. It did leave us setting up camp in a less than ideal spot in the dark, the wind blew and flapped the tent around all night. After a good breakfast we were on the trail and what a beautiful trail it was! Wildflowers galore and Ramps I have never seen as many ramps, acres of them it seemed! We had planned on staying at the Overmountian shelter an iconic barn converted to a shelter but we since we had started hiking on Friday we had arrived at the barn around 12:00 way to early to stop so walked past it. After the next mountain, we stopped for lunch, fried spam on tortillas after that climb they were great. The next two mountains little hump and hump they almost kicked my butt the wind blew a constant 50 miles an hour (guessing) It was strong enough that you had to lean over as far as you could but if you walked in front of a rock that was blocking the wind you suddenly had to catch yourself from falling, it was blowing so hard my hiking poles were singing the entire time, Jesse said it was blowing so hard it was blowing out of his ear on the other side. But the 360-degree views on the top were worth it! Then to finish off the evening we moved into Billy goat heaven 3-foot round boulders for about a mile. I believe it made for about a ten-mile day We camped at Doll flats got there around 5:00pm I thought the wind would die when we got off the balds, it did not, we had an early supper, hung our bear bag, got water and very tired got into bed early. the wind was amazing sometimes you could hear it coming up the mountain like a locomotive getting louder and louder till all of the sudden your tent would begin to shake violently leaning over almost jerking guy lines out of the ground but it never did. At around 4:30 Sunday morning it began to rain, sideways of course in the wind! We packed up in the rain we hiked in the rain. Fortunately, we only had a few miles to go. It was a trip I will remember the rest of my life! I did not realize how many people on this trail were headed to Maine! All the thru-hikers had Orange badges they get on springer mountain and I counted 25-30 in just this one day. 3,735 attempted in 2017 only 20 percent finished, I wish them all luck, to make this far is a heck of an accomplishment! A rare thing I did not take my big camera was going to try just using he cell phone the dew knocked it out Saturday morning I was so mad, it is time for a new phone. My house looks like a bomb has exploded! I have had tents mildew on me in two days so now as soon as I get home I dry everything but since it is still raining I had to do indoors, Sorry Sherri.40859366474_8a70551989_b

Moaning and Roaning

Sunday we explored a lot of southeast Tennessee. Ended up on Roan Mountian scouting for an upcoming backpacking trip.

Soggy bottoms

The rain was falling hard by the time I arrived in Brevard. I was to hike with a Meet-up group I have never hiked with. We stood out by the cars waiting for a latecomer the rain was steady I began to rethink this.  We headed into the forest anyhow. We parked at the Fish Hatchery at Davidson river. The rain began to slack off just as we began to hike.  We hiked up to Cedar Rock Creek Falls.  We had time to get camp setup and firewood gathered before the rain came back. Thank goodness for proper gear. We had a great time standing by the warmth of the fire telling stories. A good night of sleep was had with the rain pit- tatting the tent.

The next Day we got up had breakfast the hiked up to Grogan Creek Falls. It was in the 70’s and sunshine