AT Day 46 – Dramatic Skies


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31st May

26.1 miles

Bushcamp (808.6) to Harpers Creek (834.7)

I’m starting to consistently make bigger miles everyday. As I’m making bigger miles I’m taking less rest breaks and taking less photos. I need to find that sweet balance. I think 22-26 miles per day is about the right amount of enjoyable miles for me.

After an early morning climb over a couple of mountain tops I reached a series of grassy balds. The crazy sunlight and dramatic clouds put on a display. I would look at the rays of sunlight come and go between the gaps in the clouds. It was almost as if they were considering turning to rain. I lingered on the mountain tops and enjoyed the peace and solitude. No other hikers seemed to be anywhere near me. 

I tried to push extra miles today to make it close to the town of Waynesboro. Big hills got in my way and little hills and thunderstorms. Yes, it rained again. Rather than hike in the rain I decided to find a spot next to a stream and sit under my umbrella. I realised I wasn’t going to make more than 30 miles today so I slowed down and enjoyed the hike.

Part way up another large hill I stopped at a small campsite with 2 other campers. That was as far as I was going. With 3 hours till sunset I had a cup of tea while reading about the trail ahead. There are so many amazing places coming up.

The good news, my knee is feeling ok and not causing me problems, though I am favouring my left knee. The bad news, my camera lens is very badly scratched. Any photos that I take looking into the sun looks crappy with lots of visible marks in the photo. 

Next : Day 47 – 48 – Wildlife and Wild Life

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About the Author:
Brad is an Australian who has completed the hiking Triple Crown after he hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, Continental Divide Trail and Appalachian Trail. He has hiked on every continent (except Antarctica) and has cycled from Alaska to Ecuador. He is an expert on outdoor gear currently living in Chile.

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3 thoughts on “AT Day 46 – Dramatic Skies”

  1. Well Brad, I finally got caught up with your trip. Nice reports, super nice photos.

    I’m not surprised about the hikers – trash, etiquette, other issues – that’s kinda the reputation that AT hikers have had for a long time – at least that’s what I’ve read. Yes, there are hikers like that on the PCT, but it seems like not as many – maybe the remoteness of the PCT scares some of the neophytes.

    I’m also not surprised at all the rain you’ve gotten – i’m glad your’e getting used to it.

    What I am surprised at is the views. I was always under the assumption that the AT is like walking through a tunnel. But some of the vistas that you’ve had pictures of are awesome! That really surprised me, in a good way, and i’m now ready to do the AT myself! Well, someday.

    Keep on keepin’ on, Brad! God bless you, mate! Looking forward to the rest of the reports.

    Mike M, Riverside, CA

    • There certainly is more trash than other long trails, but it’s estimated that 2,000,000 people hike at least a part of the AT every year.
      As for the views, I have cherry picked the photos. It certainly is a long green tunnel. Views have to be earned. And there is a certain kind of community spirit for the trail that is hard to explain but other trails can only aspire to have it.
      That being said, I love the PCT and if I’m allowed back in the country I might just hike the PCT again next year. But keep that quiet for now. :)

      • That is great news about you considering hiking the PCT again next year. I would apply for entry by using offices in California as they would be less restrictive. I really enjoyed your posts from 2 years ago so hope you hike it again!

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