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Sat, Mar 4 2017 - Unicoi Gap to Brasstown Bald (View Original Event Details)

Trip Leader(s): Stefan, Steve H
Participants:Stefan, Steve H, Chuck R, Rick D, Laura M, Ping, Brian K

Write Up:
Beautiful, picture perfect day on the trail with strong group attempt at keeping a 3+ mph pace. Temp in the upper 20's to start but Stefan went manly with with shorts anyway. We started at Unicoi Gap with a quick ascent to Blue mountain to get our hearts pumping then a few more "bumps" and quick 4.5 miles to Chattahoochee Gap. We barely acknowledged the event when taking our right turn onto the Jacks Knob trail which added a bit more challenge for 2.4 miles before descending to route 180 and a grab quick break to get a snack and remove a layer of clothing. The, the real work would begin with our ascent to the ridge and countless switchbacks (a new word for Ping :-). After a hard earned 2 mile ascent into the Brasstown parking lot, the final 6/10 to the summit was piece of cake and completed 4000 ft of elevation gain. A few of us stopped for picture taking at the summit then group assembled at the parking lot for lunch. The return was much easier but still had a few more ascents and stop to chat with a nice family of hikers at Chattahoochee Gap. Then, the final trek up the back side of old Blue and our final short stop for a quick drink. The rocky section back from there was a bit slower and contributed to our 2.9 mph overall speed. Still a good day as we felt accomplished heading back down to Unicoi and our cars. Very strong group led by Stefan who as usual didn't disappoint ant definitely gave us our money's worth 6200 ft total ascent and just under 20 miles and we earned our ice cream for the day. This was my third time for this hike and definitely the best. Great workout, great group and hardly any whining except for Chuck R ;-). Congrats to Stefan, Chuck R, Rick D, Brian K, Ping, Laura M and many thanks for making my first AOC co-lead so memorable. Steve H