Sat, Feb 24 2018 - State Highpoints Backpacking- Clingmans Dome, TN - AT (View Original Event Details)|
WHAT A WEEKEND, BABY!!! What a weekend! Well, as I sit here nibbling on the leftover of my Kosta's - Athena Grilled Chicken Platter, I reflect on a PERFECT WEEKEND. The "highpoint" was obviously was the tower on top of Clingmans Dome (which is still open, but will close soon for maintenance on Arpil 1, 2018 according to GSMNP Ranger, Mike). Caveman, myself (Spring Chicken) & almost AOC newbie Saltlick meet at 7am headed right up 441, got checked in with the permit and were on the trail before 11am 2.24.18. We were greeted with whispy strands of fog and quite a bit of cloud cover...but NO RAIN! We made dinner (don't worry Saltlick - I've got an extra meal for you, =ahem) meet a bunch through hikers from Maine, Philly, Indiana, Alabama and even South Africia they ALL tredged through the AT since 2 AM that morning from Fontana...31 miles our 11+ daily mile event was quickly hushed and we chit chatted over a water soaked fire ring. There was the 3 AOC'ers + 2 through hikers that called Double Spings Gap Shelter home that night, but those 2 ended the party at 5:30 am as they headed on to get resupplies in Gatlinburg. I woke up to the sounds of a DRIVING RAIN only to hear them up and at it right at 5:21 am...So I got my gear off the bear cables, wished them luck and went back to sleep hoping to hear the sounds of silence when I woke up again at 7:15-ish...it was still raining but not as hard. We ate packed up and moved out right as the rain let up. So day TWO went off without a deluge and I even saw the sun peek out a few times right when we summited the Tennessee (AT and SE USA) high point again. It was a great, hard, testing weekend soon not to be forgotten. Overall we hiked 22.8 miles, burned 5,113 calories, had an elevation gain of 6.024 for the weekend...all in all GREAT TIME. C-ya soon!
excuse my brevity and mispellings - I'm toast!