Sunday, 8 April 2012

I see the light!!

So, I’ve written a lot in the past couple of hours but nothing about the actual walking along the trail. To date I’ve walked around 55 miles, 40 on the trail, 15 off in 3 days and a morning. On the trail I think an average day will be around 15 miles as the trail is pretty undulating and it has a lot of climbs and descents. For me the descents are the harder parts as I find them hard on the joints but all in all I’m pretty happy with how the body is coping.
The weather is interesting. The first day was beautiful sunshine and I reveled in it. The second day we were completely enclosed with mist and it rained (sparingly) intermittently. However when I climbed blood mountain which was the high peak of the day I cleared the mist at the peak into sunshine which was an amazing contrast. The mist returned as soon as I descended however.

As an aside on the 2nd night I shared my campsite with a couple of girls (I’ve forgotten their trail names) we were sharing stories of the day and remarked at what a change it was coming out of the mist on blood mountain. When I had got to the top there was a large Christian group that were there as some sort of youth group outing, so as I was talking to the girls I said something along the lines of maybe the youth group had managed to ‘claim the light’ and clear the mist.
The girls gave me a weird look and for the life of me I don’t know whether it was because they were religious and I had offended their sensibilities or if they had taken my statement at face value and thought I was some sort of evangelist. Either way the conversation kind of ended and I was left wondering if my sense of humour will get me in trouble here in the US.

Back onto the trail.. the weather was cold on the third day but clear and I managed to get some amazing mountain vista views. That really is what is giving me the buzz as I’m walking. The countryside is extremely pretty and its quite exuberating walking along a saddle and seeing the rolling mountain range on either side. Don’t get me wrong, the walking is quite hard yakka and the descents and ascents are hurting. I have confidence however that my body is going to adapt to the strain and it’s feels so good to be out in the fresh air just walking.

It’s true that I’ve already come off the trail after only 3 days, but that was more because I knew that I was behind on updating this blog and I thought it would be a good idea to have a clean up. That is one thing of the trail so far, I haven’t come across a stream big enough to wash in. Most of the water I’ve come across is from pipe springs that have been set up for hikers. That’s all well and good for drinking water but I was kind of expecting to be able to wash in streams which doesn’t look like it’ll be the case which does mean I’m going to get very smelly over the course of this trip.

That’ll have to do for my blog updates. I’m currently in a town called Helen which is a tourist town where all the buildings and businesses have a Bavarian or Swiss theme. It’s kind of like a cross between Sovereign Hill meets Oktoberfest although I cant ever remember seeing a Wendy’s in Baveria.

Next update in a week or so



  1. Delighted you're updating regularly. Following your exploits on a map to work out where you are & historical significance of those places. Today have sorted phone request. and iinet will hot mail you.

  2. Google Maps estimates that to detour into Helen and back you'd have "walkabout" 20 miles ... ha, ha, ha. Too many side-trips like that and you'll end up walking twice as far as the other thru-hikers, but you'll have more photos.

  3. Sounds like you are having a ball - your sense of humor may just get you into a bit of strife though, haha. Keep the updates coming, it's been a good read so far!