Fri, Dec 7 2018 - Springer Mountain/ Benton MacKaye Loop (Rescheduled) (View Original Event Details)

Trip Leader(s): Holt Ward
Participants:Holt Ward, Paul Black, Ann Howard, Linda H, Evy, Ralph Howard, Shirley N, Bunnie, Norm Melton, Amanda L, Lisa, Dan C, Janet G

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Write Up:

What an exciting day to hike in North Georgia.  On today's hike we visited the beginning point and hiked portions of two of America's greatest "long" trails, the famous Appalachian Trail and the Benton MacKaye Trail.  While gearing up in the parking lot we were treated to an AT thru hiker who had but 0.9 miles to go to finish her 5 month hike.  We took photos of her and her mother and sister who joined her for the final day of hiking.  Truly a treat. 

The day was threatening as we started out in a light rain but the rain stopped shortly.  We first hiked the BMT, crossing numerous streams where we had no wet foot casualties.  After a brief stop at Big Stamp Gap, we headed up Ball Mountain.  Then after a short descent, it was up the side of Springer Mountain towards the summit.

We passed the Benton MacKaye memorial plaque and finally reached the beginning point of the BMT where it intersects the AT.  Heading south on the AT, we quickly reached the summit and the first white blaze, marking the beginning of the AT.  After photos, we headed south on the AT Approach Trail to our lunch spot at Black Gap Shelter.  After lunch, it was our final climb of the day back to the summit of Springer.  On the descent towards the parking lot we enjoyed some beautiful icicle displays were springs on the side of the trail were freezing.  Finally we reached our cars and the end of an enjoyable day of hiking.  We covered 9.8 miles and 1800 feet of elevation gain on our hike.  ~ Holt