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  1. #1
    New Member
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    Recent trip to the AT

    I try to backpack a section of the AT twice a year. This trip the last week of August had to be shorter than normal (4 days). I picked up a hiking partner enroute, we started at the Nantahala Outdoor center and traveled to Fontana Dam. The first section going north is one of the toughest climbs in the area. Ascended from 1800 ft to 5000 ft summit at Cheoa Bald with overnight stop at Sassafras gap shelter. Weather was perfect 75 day and 58 at night. Found metal ammo box at peak with notebook for notes from every traveler. No bear problems and saw some large deer. Hammock and rain fly worked perfect as well as alcohol stove. Meal prep was minimal effort and quick. Found all water sources almost dried up and had to put a coffee cup in the small stream and wait for it to fill up before using water filter. Time consuming but also time to rest. We were sleeping 10 and 11 hours every night. (great for recharge). The climb down to Steoah Gap was a treacherous rocky trail at times with a lot of fallen trees blocking the only path along ridge switchbacks. The next section to Brown Fork Gap was very steep but short, then mostly downhill or gradual to Fontana Dam. I used Jeff and Nancy from The Hike Inn for shuttle back and as usual they are wonderful. I am posting a couple of pics. The pic of me is dirty and tired but triumphant at 5000 ft mark.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Senior Member Poppabear's Avatar
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    Dec 2009
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    Lexington Park, MD
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    Thanks for sharing your pictures and report.
    Terry

  3. #3
    richtorfla's Avatar
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    Apr 2009
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    Clearwater,Florida
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    Awesome views! Makes me envious. Want to get up there one day. Looks like the trip was worth it in that first pic!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Muskrat's Avatar
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    Aug 2009
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    Irmo, SC
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    Remember that hike very well. Had a group of kids with me and when we arrived at Sassafras Gap shelter, it was full. Kids were done hiking, it was dark, everyone was hungry so we ended up setting two tents literally right off the trail. Didn't care what others thought, just wanted food and sleep.

    Thanks for bringing back some good memories. Nice pics too.
    “He doesn't know the meaning of the word fear, but then again he doesn't know the meaning of most words”
    - Bobby Bowden

  5. #5
    Senior Member NCPatrick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Winston-Salem, NC
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    Thanks for the trip report. Congrats on your successful hike, and thanks for the pictures!


    "Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities."
    - Mark Twain
    “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.”
    - John Burroughs

  6. #6
    Dutch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Reinholds, PA
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    That is a great section, I plan on doing it between Christmas and new years. Great trip report.
    Peace Dutch
    GA>ME 2003

    Fall MAHHA 2015 Oct 9-11
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  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    south carolina
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    That t-shirt is great
    I have heard your confession I know who you blame
    If you had it all back you'd just lose it again
    Can't bank on redemption if you ain't saved
    Don't bring me your tales of temptation and loss
    Don't bring me the pieces of your shattered cross

    -- Stuart Adamson

  8. #8
    Great report and pic's, I will get to that section one day, workin my way south from Maryland!!!

  9. #9
    Senior Member
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    You didn't mention you came across a scarecrow. lol Nice pic's and thats great weather too!!!

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Sounds, and looks, like a great time! Thanks for sharing your trip.

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