Day 23: Cosby Knob to Snowbird Mtn
Trip Start Mar 15, 2010
134Trip End Jul 23, 2010
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Fun tidbit: Many refer to hiking the Appalachian trail as "walking north with spring." A southbound hike is typically walking with fall, the normal itinerary is based on weather and closures of the trail's northern terminus (Baxter State Park) in the winter.
Today we hiked straight through spring and into summer! By the time we hit our current low point on the trail (1300ft) it was around 85 degrees and the sun was sweltering! The morning didn't start off well though, at 5:00 we were all awoken by a spring breaker's cell phone alarm going off in his bag for about 5 minutes. He apparently never woke up to this so some thruhiker on the bottom bunk got up and hauled the kids pack off into the woods. It was hard to get back to sleep.
Sunrise was beautiful and hit me right in the face :) The morning was basically all downhill after a quick brush with Mt Cammerer
After a tough 1 mile we are at the Standing Bear Hostel which is like a little hippy commune. Sherlock and I split a frozen pizza (yes we did cook it) and enjoy lazing around drinking water and soda and soaking our feet in the icy river water. After the afternoon heat subsided we got all geared up again and hiked up 5 miles to the top of Snowbird Mtn.
The climb was tough but absolutely worth it, 360 views from the grassy bald back towards Gatlinburg, Knoxville, and the Smoky Mtns (we are now done with them!)
The best part about finishing the Smokies (besides no more snow) is that you can camp more or less anywhere. So we are set up right here next to an FAA air control tower. The sunset was magnificent. All the mtns and valleys were offset by the oranges and reds of the sky. The sun itself disappeared behind a far off ridge in such a slow labored fashion, like an m&m melting away on a summers day.
Looking forward to waking up at sunrise, and perhaps enjoying the stars too. The city lights far below seem worlds away. This is why I am out here! I feel peaceful and happy. Wish I could be sharing these moments with some of y'all. Guess this'll have to do!