As we wind down our first week here in Texas, time is inching closer to when we leave for Georgia for the Trail. We’ve tentatively set the date for starting for the weekend of the 13th of March. With all of the snow that has fallen this month and in January, it appears the trail conditions are fairly bad, especially in the higher elevations of North Carolina and up the trail.
We experienced the blow-downs here and there are a lot of them on the AT in GA and NC right now, though local trail associations are clearing them out as they can.
I think we’ve convinced my uncle and my dad to drive us out there to start. We’ll be paying for gas, of course, but it seemed to be the most feasible way to do things. We’d originally thought to fly out and then find a ride from the Atlanta airport to Amicalola Falls State Park, but the ease of being driven to the approach trail at the park sounds much better.
I also like the idea of having my dad out there to see us off. He can take photos and assure my mom we’re going to be alright.
After doing some hiking around here the past few days I already know that the hike up the approach trail is going to kick our butts. We are going to be craving some straight sections and downhills after awhile, but eventually our quads, calves and shins will get used to the abuse and carry us through.
So far we’ve either had people think we’re insane or they’ve been a bit jealous that we’re going. Sometimes I think we’re insane, but mostly I’m looking forward to being out in the woods. After downgrading everything we have in our life I’m finding some of the consumerism around here overwhelming. And I want to go in every store and buy something. HA! It’s a strange combination, feeling like there is just too much ‘stuff’ but then also craving to buy something. I could have bought out REI, or at least the womens clothing section. I think most of it is a novelty of seeing all of these places I haven’t seen in so long as Florida doesn’t have the urban sprawl that Texas has. Don’t get me wrong, Florida has sprawl, but it also has a limited amount of space to build. There is just store after store here and oh, Mexican food on every corner.
As for seeing Mexican on every corner, it is kinda nice to see things written in Spanish, too. I had gotten used to seeing Pollo Tropical restaurants and then billboards written in Spanish and Spanish on just about everything in Miami, but Spanish is finally becoming more prevalent in North Texas, too. I kinda miss the cultural diversity. It is much more separate here, particular parts of town and not everyone mixed into one big lump of a county.
I was on Whiteblaze.net earlier and found a cool site called Trail Phone where people call in and give trail reports. It is really awesome! I don’t know if we’ll use it or not, but I like the idea of calling in and giving a minute report on what’s going on.
I guess I’m about done with my rambling for today. We’re spending all day tomorrow doing our mail drop planning since we’ll have some quiet time. We may end up buying food for the drops as well if we have the time. It’s supposed to snow or ice on Tuesday or Wednesday and we’d planned to go to East Texas to visit my friend Michelle so hopefully we don’t get snowed out.
Where is the 70*?
I am certainly excited and a bit jealous. Good luck. Make sure you contact us when you get to the Connecticut part of the trail (send an email if you want my phone #). Our little section of the trial is a pretty/historical area and of course the Berkshires of MA are after that. Godspeed to you both. I am going to miss this blog quite a bit. You have always made it so personal it has been lovely reading it over time.