Today was one if our best days! After waking at 8:00 am, Tandem got real coffee at the shelter. The water source was piped from the spring, so it was easy to fill our containers. I met Impact at the spring. Tandem finished socializing, then we loaded up and made the .4 mile walk back to the AT.
I led most of the day, and we did our usual pace of 30 minute miles with breaks and lunch. Before lunch, we found some cell signal to send in our weekly reports and blogs for yesterday. Soon after, the skies cleared and the sun came out.
We soon caught up with Momo, who joined us for lunch at the 5.2 mile mark at the Tri-Corner shelter. We had the place to ourselves. Momo checked the shelter hiker log and saw that Bison and Kozi had tented there last night and would be slowing down for us to catch up.
We finished lunch and left Momo at 13:00, who had to clean up after his lunch. We got a slow start going uphill but soon hit out stride. We had 7.7 miles to go to Cosby Knob shelter, where we hoped to get a shelter spot due to the incoming inclement weather.
After passing the wreckage of an F4 Phantom, we caught up with Lobstah. We slowed to her pace, enjoying the company, and eventually caught up with Impact to create a foursome.
I learned the source of Impact’s trail name. He is a student Christian leader at UNC Asheville and told hikers early that he is out here to make a religious impact on hikers. While the girls took off on the uphills, Impact and I discussed religion, Asheville, the trail, and Scouting, since he is an Eagle Scout.
We made good time and cruised into the shelter at 16:00, where there were spaces for all four of us. RW and Momo arrived, filled the shelter to 14, which is two over the max of 12. There were another five or so in tents. We made Minestrone soup with 1/2 of the water, which made it strong.
After dinner, we socialized, talking about Nerf zombi campus games and joking about the trail experiences. It was a great evening!
There are high winds expected overnight, with rain starting tomorrow. We hope to make it to the Standing Bear Farm hostel for food and to the Painter Branch campsite tomorrow, covering 12.8 miles.