Friday, April 29, 2011

Erwin, TN

woot woot, so here we are in TN, we hiked out of Hot Springs on an 85 degree day, straight uphill.  Town made us a little soft, and we were a bit tired from the shinanigans of the night before, but we made it 10 miles out of town before finding a fire tower overlooking gorgeous mountains and city lights.  Laugh Track and I decided to sleep up there along with Bronza, Coyote, and Fish Head.  It was pretty cool to be sleeping 50 feet in the air, with the cool breeze keeping the bugs away and some good entertainment provided by the boys.  The mountains following that day proceeded to kick our asses, but we made it to the shelter or campsite every night in high sprirts.  One day we accidentally took a wrong turn and got to hike an extra 5 miles...that was fun, but we made up for it with a lot of chocolate and jokes.  We ran into some AMAZING trail magic from two wonderful trail angels.  Hercules and FAL hosted us for about 3 hours while they fed us belgian waffles, pork stew, quiche, pulled pork sandwiches, bread pudding, ice cream, and soda.  It was the best detour we have ever taken.  They both hiked the trail in 1998, so we picked their brain for about 2 hours after lunch and got some fun details about the trail, trail days, terrain in the different states, and where to find good water spots in PA.  Two nights ago we camped in a small valley with Little Bird, Yinz, Spins, Gumby and Bootlegger, since we heard there was a massive storm coming through...and sure enough, around midnight, the storm of the century hit the mountains.  to top it all off, laugh track and i had been telling ghost stories around the fire right before bed, so we were freaking out just a little bit.  the lightning was out of control and the rain on our tent sounded like bullets, and the sound of the wind was like someone screaming, but we survived the night with the aid of a few tylenol PM's.  wet and tired we headed up and down some more mountains, making it to the top of big bald, hoping for some views, but all that was up there was fog...not that we let that dampen our spirits!!  as we headed into erwin, a couple who had thru hiked last year had set up camp and were offering hikers hot dogs, baked beans, brownies, soda, beer and homemade hooch!  we met up with Bootlegger and the three of us may or may not have downd two gallons of the hooch (which is surprisingly easy to make...note to self) and spent the next three hours joking and laughing with the other hikers who came through.  Yinz met up with us and the four of us decided to hitch into Erwin for some snacks, beer, and to see the town.  We camped out behind a little league field, met some nice locals, got some nachos and watched some t-ball, which seemed to be the big thing happening around town.  This morning we got delicious breakfast, some biscuits and gravy, eggs, bacon, homefries, and coffee, and are planning on doing some laundry, and even taking a shower!!  We head out tonight to try to get into Elk Park for our next mail drop!!  We are having a blast out here, even though we look 80 years old when we hobble out of our tent in the morning, but as they say, no pain, no rain, no we deal with it with smiles and jokes, and a lot of snickers.  we can't stop talking about how amazing this adventure is, and how generous and giving so many people are, from the trail angels who give us food, to the local in the cavalier who stuffed four gross hikers and four enormous packs into his tiny car with a smile.  people are so willing to help out and talk to you, and knowing we don't have to be on a schedule or have a time limit on anything, this trip is definitely a huge learning experience, and the best idea laugh track and i have ever come up with.  we have been out here for a month, and can't wait to see what comes our way next!! 

Friday, April 22, 2011

Hot Springs!

well, laugh track and i made it to hot springs, NC.  we had an amazing time in the Great Smoky Mts. absolutely beautiful views from the tops of mountains and gorgeous walks along ridge lines while the sun filtered through the trees.  we didn't get to see any bears, unfortunately, but we did get to hang out with a bunch of awesome people, 2-beards, coyote, fish head, mouse, cool cat, woodstock, and goopa.  laugh track and i walked 18 miles to get to standing bear hostel in TN for a party they were throwing on 4/20 - all you can eat pulled pork sandwiches, hot dogs, salad, beans, rice, veggies, was amazing.  we camped out in the back yard, met some AWESOME people, including the former fiddle player for Old Crow Medicine Show, and just had an awesome time.  the next day we were set to head back out on the trail, but a few more of our friends rolled in, and we thought we should take some more time off to heal some nasty blisters that keep sprouting up, so we stayed on another night hanging out with last minute, goopa, knittin', mouse, milk man, box elder, tooth-pac, blue steel, and mel, making s'mores, drinking some beer, and playing with a pet squirrell.  the weather has been a bit dreary, but today it cleared up a bit, and we got to do laundry and take showers!! so all is right in the world again.  this trip couldn't get any better, the people are awesome, the views are fantastic, and we are having the BEST time just talking about stories from camp, our lives, and society and the world in general.  walking for 10 hours a day really gives you a lot of time to think and ponder certain questions and ideas.  we have talked A LOT about EVERYTHING, even though we have only been out here for about 3 weeks...i can't imagine what we will be like in 6 months!  i miss rugby like crazy, and we both miss NYC, but being in the wilderness and walking for miles each day is amazing...our toughest decision being whether to make pasta or rice for is very agreeable.  we LOVE it out here.  miss you all!  we are thinking of you!  out to the pub tonight for some local brews and a few burgers!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Fontana Dam

So, laugh track and i made to fontana dam with a detour to the hostpital for a 'scrip for vicodin for a pulled quad on my part.  hiked 7 miles straight uphill right out of NOC in the FREEZING RAIN and 70 mile an hour winds....finally pulled up to sassafrass gap shelter, and cozied in with some other soaking wet hikers.  it's amazing how great a cup of hot cocoa with brown sugar can make you feel.  we spent the afternoon cracking up at the antics of Bronza, Fish Head, Rebel and Coyote... never before have i laughed so hard while wearing every article of clothing i own and trying not to move from my sleeping bag.  fortunately, laugh track got some of it on video so that should be up at some point.  3 hats curled up in our tent to keep warm, since the shelter was full by the time she got there, but thankfully, today was absolutely beautiful, soft breezes, blooming dogwoods, and a great lunch break with all our friends on the side of the road.  got pulled pork sandwiches, salad (our first green veggies in a while!!!) and our first mail drops!  Some nice surprises from friends and family back home!!! You are all amazing, thank you so much for the support and love you are sending our way!!! we love you and are having the time of our lives!!!!  We'll give you an update at our next town!!! Oh my goth! Nemo's thwimming our to thea!!!!!

Monday, April 11, 2011


made it to NOC today, as in Nantahala Outdoor Club in Bryson City, NC.  it was 12 miles of downhill today...our knees were dying, but well worth the views.  Laugh Track and I gorged on twix and chips and nacho cheese while watching guys in kayaks do tricks in the river.  Got a bunk for tonight, which means shower and laundry...hell yes! then grabbing a 6 pack and hanging out with our friends and watching the sunset.  Don't think the weather could get any better, or that we could be having any more fun. this is a blast and a half.  134 miles down.... GIT 'R DONE!!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Franklin, NC

Hey hey hey!!!! So we have made it more than 100 miles from Springer Mt, in GA to Franklin, NC.  The weather has been beautiful, sunny, warm, breezy, with only one hiccup on top of Trey Mt in GA where we got to experience a torrential downpour and insane thunderstorm while huddling in the back of the shelter.  We woke up to snow on the ground, but it melted before the day was out and the weather turned perfect once again.   Although our feet are sore and blistered, and our muscles tight, we are having the time of our lives.  We passed over Blood Mt, the highest mountian in GA, on the 4th, spending out first night inside at Neels Gap, resupplying and taking our first shower.  We then treked on to a few more shelters, doing our first 16 mile day on the way up Trey Mt, before collapsing into our sleeping bags during the T-storm.  After that, we made it into Hiawasse, where we indulged in McDonalds, a shower, some good convorsation with other hikers, and a great breakfast, courtesy of the Blueberry Patch Hostel.  After making it to the GA-NC boarder the next day, we were greeted by a mountain that seemed endless, the only respite being that we joined up with a group of hikers our own age, since mostly we had been hiking with retirees.  Gumby, Last Minute, Spins, Doc Boom, Yinz, and Little Bird made the next few days more enjoyable, since we got to see Spins do some fire spining at a camp and head into Franklin together.  We'll keep you updated!!!