Many, (oh so many) ticks, bridges, fords, stairs, waterfalls, mountain views, and all experienced with good company. The weather was perfect this weekend. After setting up the shuttle, we set off down Auger Hole Trail to connect to the Foothills Trail. On one of the fords, I, along with many others, found what would be the first of many ticks on this trip. Tick checks became a thing. After all, if you can't ask a fellow backpacker to check you out (for ticks), who can you ask?
Shortly before joining with the Foothills Trail we were treated with a very nice mountain view near a power line cut. The group made it down to the Foothills Trail in great time. We turned left on the Foothills Trail and off we went. We had lunch on the trail near a small spring. After refueling and re-hydrating, off we went back down the Foothills Trail. We had 8 miles to go to the campsite. However, before we reached home for the night, the Foothills Trail provided us with some beautiful views of Lake Jocassee. Soon, we arrived at the 225 foot massive suspension bridge over the Toxaway River. "Heartbreak Ridge" was next.
Leaving Heartbreak Ridge with hearts, lungs and body intact, we started to make our final punish to camp. The first talk of dinner meals began. An hour later, we were at the view of Laurel Fork Falls. Shortly after that we were at camp for the night and began setting up camp, filtering water, gathering firewood, and preparing our much deserved dinner meals. We ate our dinner and traded stories around the hiker TV for a good portion of the night.
In the morning, we made our short push to the cars. Leaving the campsite, we hike along this beautiful creek for a while. The trail then begins a gradual gain of elevation to crest the final ridge before we made it way down to Laurel Valley and our cars. We finished the hike before 12:00 PM and with what seemed like a world record of ticks.
We ended the hike with Mexican food and cold drinks. At the end of the day, it was a great hike with fantastic crew and weather.