Sunday, 17 June – Back to the Trail
|Destination: Icewater Spring Shelter
|Today’s Miles: 3.1
|Start Location: Newfound Gap
|Trip Miles: 211.6
Back to the hotel after dinner last night to start packing. Early to bed.
Enjoyed a real breakfast and did final packing. Checkout was eleven so I drove back to the trail at Newfound Gap. Since I hiked from Newfound Gap to Clingman Dome last November when we met Trail Snail, I skipped that section, 7.6 miles. Said my goodbye to Dolora and headed north.
My choice for today was three miles or ten miles. I got to Ice water Spring Shelter a little after one. There was some thunder in the distance. Batches of day hikers stopped by. A pretty good thunderstorm started and the shelter filled with day hikers hiding from the rain. Soon a family of eight came in to stay at the shelter, lots of noise and commotion. A young hiker, Mollie, stopped and we chatted a while about long distance hiking. As the rain slowed the day hikers headed out. I settled in and made dinner. It started to rain pretty hard again. Another group of three came in to stay at the shelter. They will be at the same shelters as me for the next two nights.
Later, another hiker came in to fill the shelter. The rain finally stopped. It has really cooled off. It looks like I made the right decision on doing my short day today. Usually, I make the decision that gets me wet. Twelve miles tomorrow.