Sunday, May 08, 2016; AT Mile 263.1
Walked from 247.2 to 258.9 or 12.7 miles.
Started 06:52 AM, stopped 03:10 PM.
Ave mph was 1.53, excluding lunch.
Battery used: 5 percent
I didn't do as far today as I would have liked. But given my ankle issues I'm pretty happy. Nice day with sun later. Humongous winds up on Max Patch bald. Lots of ups to get there. Some great views. Then some nice long gradual downs. Finished the day with two challenging ups. The site at the top of the mountain was open so I took it. Sometimes the downs offer few camp sites.
I was really worried about my ankle yesterday. But I stopped early and it appears to have helped. Only minor issues today. But I still didn't want to push it. Unless the down tomorrow to Hot Springs is really nasty I ought to get to town by 2:00 to 3:00 pm. Then I will take a zero.
The wind on Max Patch probably wasn't the 60 mph the hiker yesterday quoted. But it was strong enough to blow me off the trail mid-step. I had to put my rain jacket on and tighten my hat.
Much of the down today seemed to follow a stream through a long valley.
Bugs hit the last two hours. I'm hoping they will be fewer here on the height. Though when I was adjusting a tent stake a bee stung me on the palm of my hand. Couldn't believe it.
Bunch of day hikers like usual. But not as bad as yesterday. Said hi to a couple older than me that was also heading north. Should have got their names. Passed three young women in black at the last gap. Unusual attire. Then as I was coming up the up, I heard singing and yelling behind me. Most thrus will pass me on an up. I even stopped to get water. Then while I was setting up my tent, 50 feet off the trail, the three young women arrived by the stones at the peak. Not sure if I took their site or what. They paused a really long time without taking off their packs.
First time I've had more than one bar since the evening I left the Smokies. But think I will leave all media work for my zero.
Have a good day!
Heading up to Max Patch...
Top of Bluff Mountain...
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