Am I cheating? Inside for the second night in a row. We hiked 6.9 miles over Levelland Mountain, Cowrock Mountain, and Wildcat Mountain. The rain was not nearly as bad as I was expecting. Really it only rained for an hour or two and by the time it got through the trees, it was very light. Rain gear is super warm too so I was down to just a short sleeve shirt beneath my rain jacket, all vents open, and no gloves on. It was very foggy though so we missed all the views.
I slept a little better being in a bed last night but it was still early when I went to go to sleep so I woke up for a while in the middle of the night, as usual. I stopped at Mountain Crossings this morning to pick up a few things but I packed way too much food initially so I only needed a handful of items to get me through to Hiawasee. My pack is feeling lighter all the time as I get used to it and as I figure out the correct amount of food and water to carry every day. I’m already feeling stronger on the uphills and I’ve also figured out how to go a little faster than my original excruciatingly slow pace on the downhills. I use my trekking poles to keep from falling on my face as I use any momentum to sort of jog a few paces down on the clearer sections.
It was hard to keep track of where I was today as the fog obscured everything and there were no real landmarks until a mile before we were stopping. Ken picked us up at Hogpen Gap and instead of taking the others he could fit in his truck back to the cabins, he and Cindy took all five of us in for the night – me, Pacemaker, Runner Up, Sparky, and Mellow Johnny. They made us a delicious dinner and we played a game of pool with very interesting rules, and it was all very fun. Thanks, Ken and Cindy!