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[at-l] Day Trip report

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Sorry Amy, no pictures.

I woke this morning with all good intentions of spending the day
re-organizing my office w/ gear closet. At this point it is more a gear room
with a closet office.  So, like all good ALDHA members, I went for a hike
instead!  I had hoped to do an overnight trip next weekend and wanted to see
how my foot would fare.  This would be the first hike since my foot surgery
where I actually wore something other than open backed shoes.  I figured out
that if I skip a heavy sock on that foot and just wear a liner, my boots fit

It is peak leaf weekend here in NC and I was foolish enough to attempt to
drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Spent about 45 minutes dodging all the leaf
peepers and picture-taking idiots. I'm not saying that everyone who takes
pictures are idiots, just the ones standing in the middle of the road on a
curve, which was just about everyone I saw with a camera today.

Fall is my favorite time in the woods, a leftover from the October afternoons
when I ran home from the bus stop after school so I could escape to the woods
behind our house. Started out at Graveyard Field and walked to the upper
falls (1 1/2-2 miles?)  It was nice to be on a dirt trail again, smelling the
decomposing rhododendron and stomping through mud puddles, even if there were
way too many tourists.  I sat on the riverbank watching sticks float by for a
bit but kept being disturbed by nosy, wet dogs. (really, I was) The leaves
were very pretty, even for a foliage snob like me and it's nice to see
running water in the Carolinas again.

Since I was still pretty comfortable when I got back to the parking lot, I
drove up to Black Balsam and climbed the mountain. Although lower elevations
had good visibility, I was enshrouded in misty clouds at the top - my
favorite type of weather, even if it isn't the best for viewing the colors.
The number of other people was  markedly diminished - saw a few backpackers,
but they don't seem to bother me like tourists do.

So, that was it. From what I can figure, I walked between 4-5 miles total,
without Lekis. I even had two pairs with me and still forgot to bring them on
my walk.  My heel is a bit tender on the healing suture line, but the repair
feels great and I am hiking with much less pain than prior to being cut open.

Not the most exciting trip report, I guess, but I'm excited about it.

It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live. - Albus Dumbledore