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[at-l] re: amicalola to fontana

hi marty -

>>I'm curious as to why you would take so much longer the 2nd
time - is it the scenery, sore muscles, or what?  I think someone else said
it before, but you never hear a thru hiker say they wish they had taken less
time to do it.<<

it partly has to do with the tendonitis i suffered - i really am a firm
believer (now) in starting off much slower than you "normally" could go.
most of the problems i have suffered have come at the beginning of trips.  

also, yes, i'd do the trail slower next time.  92 took exactly 5 months,
i'd like to do it in 6.  i'd like to plan days off at beautiful campsites
instead of in towns.  and i'd want to visit places i didn't get to the
first time around.  specifically, between springer and fontana, i'd like to
stay at the wilson(?) shelter just north of neal's gap, which is 1 mile off
the trail and by-passed by most thru hikers and i'd take the 'side trail'
to climb georgia's highest peak, only 5 miles from the trail.

>>Also, I'm kicking around the idea of hiking the approach trail.  Would you
recommend it, and why did you do it?<<

i did it for a number of reasons.  1) most literature says springer is
accessed from amicalola so that's where i went; 2) i didn't do a lot (any?)
research on shuttles, so it was easiest to get to amicalola rather than the
fs roads; 3) i wanted to see the falls.

i would do it again, too.  what's 8 miles on top of 2000?  in retrospect, i
really enjoyed the anticipation that developed over the 24 hours from when
i was dropped off with my brother at the entrance to the park to when we
finally stood on the bronze plaque at the summit.  this was different from
the months of anticipation prior to the hike; the hike up from the falls to
springer seemed to focus all of the diffuse excitement to a single,
distilled realization that "wow, here i am, for better or worse it is

(for all you engineers and planners out there, this is a great time to stop
- you just spent months planning this trip and all that effort has paid off
by getting you to the start fully prepared - from a planning and scheduling
standpoint, you may not feel this accomplished until katahdin!  me, i had
planned on staying at springer shelter, but not half an hour after my hike
began, we changed plans and went on to stover creek.  it was all downhill
from there.)


ke kaahawe

 .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .
/ \  / \  / \  / \  / \  / \  / \  / \  / \  / \  / \
   \/   \/   \/   \/   \/   \/   \/   \/   \/   \/   \

Michael Henderson		mikeh@royalrobbins.com

There is more to life than increasing it's speed - Ghandi
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