I left Overmountain Shelter bright and early. Though the days have been much warmer, the nights always cool down considerably. In the mornings, it can be difficult to get out of my warm sleeping quilt to start the day. Always, I look forward to my coffee and oatmeal. I look forward to it, and it propels me to get my day started. Everything looks better after a warm breakfast.
Though it certainly wasn’t an easy day, this was one of the hiking days I have enjoyed the most so far. It was absolutely beautiful. I saw a number of waterfalls, balds, meadows, a river.
I even got to talk to Bud on this day. It was the day after his Birthday. I didn’t have cell service to call him on his Birthday, so I was happy to talk to him.
I passed the 400 mile marker on this day. It was at the side trail to a waterfall. Everyone I passed said ‘it’s worth it.’ I can’t remember how far the guide book said it was, but it was enough that a tired Hiker would not want to take the diversion off official trail miles. In fact, I didn’t go see it on my last hike. My pack felt very heavy on this day, and when I took it off, I felt like I was off balance and sort of floating! I have to agree, this waterfall was spectacular and worth the walk! It was absolutely gorgeous.
On the way back, I stopped by a mini waterfall (I think the proper name is ‘cascade’) and I splashed water on my face. It was a really warm day and the cool water felt nice. I also washed the salt off my arms, legs face and neck. When I got back to the main trail, I met Happy Feet, Giggles and Sticks. Someone had made a 400 out of sticks to mark this mile, and they wanted their picture taken. I asked them to take mine as well.
This was a big mile day and I was worrying about making it to my destination and it was so hot!
At one point the trail went right beside a nice, clear river. If I hadn’t been worried about the time, I would have jumped in! It looked so inviting. I watched a duck riding the rapids, and it made me smile. 🙂
When I got to the shelter, the places to set up a tent were not desirable. Many people had stopped in the city of Roan Mt., so I was worried that I would be alone. The tenting area had a lot of freshly cut logs and wood shavings. As I was walking out of this area to get water, I almost stepped on a huge black snake. I know they are not venomous, but they never fail to give me a scare because they are always so huge! I hoped he didn’t have any venomous cousins around!
When I got into my tent, I listened as hiker after Hiker trudged past the shelter. I didn’t want to be completely alone. Finally, I heard some very noisy hikers setting up their tents. I finally relaxed and drifted off to sleep.