Hey y'all, Macon here.Up and ready to climb straight up about seven miles and up about 3000 feet. The past few days have been wonderful. After Hiawassee I took an easy six mile day and camped just before the GA/NC border. Monday I planned to head to Standing Indian Mountain campsite but stopped in at a shelter just before and decided to stay. I'd been weary of shelters before then but I'd met some great people, and it's fun to hike alone all day and gather with others in the evenings to share a meal and be social.
Tuesday I was feeling great, the weather was gorgeous - brisk but sunny - and the terrain wasn't too challenging so I did a good 19 mile day to Rock Gap Shelter. The highlight of the day was climbing up Albert Mountain - very steep, using all limbs, an invigorating challenge after so much gradual uphill. At Rock Gap I met a great group of guys that I've been hiking with since - Gribly, Davy Jones, and Pants on Fire (ed. note – all “trail names”)
Gribly named me Daystar - it's from a blessing that talks about how in the night there are many stars but in the day we just have the one day star (the sun). I've been such a hippy-dippy art director out here, constantly pointing out the beautiful light, so Gribs thought Daystar was fitting.
Anyway Wednesday morning we had a great breakfast and slack-packed up to Wayah Bald. Mom met us with homemade sandwiches, hard-boiled eggs, pickles, snickers, and water. Davy got a fine $4 Malbec at Walmart earlier in the day, and we had a great evening watching the sunset on the tower. We spent the night there which was chilly but so awesome.
I need to move on now but I should get to Fontana Dam in two days and will try to write more - its tedious writing this out on my phone. Had a great time at the NOC, the Nanatahal Outdoor Center (http://www.noc.com/) but it’s almost 9, and the trail is calling me back!