Rather than drive to Wilson Gap on a forest service road, I got a very early start at easily accessible Warwoman Dell (1884 feet), and headed north towards Rainy Gap.
Miles 1-2 = A promising start. Sun rising, forest dripping from last night's rain. Passing Martin Creek Falls, I smiled at happy memories of previous trips and firsts.
Mile 3 = Sticky rhododendron petals glomed pounds of crud to my boots. I tried to pry it off with a stick. More leaves and sticks accumulated. Every. Step. Was. Hard. Uphill. I kept thinking, "I thought I liked uphill?!?! I thought I loved rhododendrons?!?"
|Sticky crud caked to my boots maked walking difficult.|
Mile 4 = Blackberry brambles were overtaking the trail and slicing my legs/ arms. Hot humid sweaty itchy scratchy. "Why am I doing this again?" I asked myself every few minutes.
Mile 5/6 = Seriously considered turning around and going home and taking a nap. Decided instead to have another snack.
|Banana waffles with peanut butter. High point of the day.|
|Where I turned around on this hike. 5.5 miles from Rabun Bald.|
|Where I ended a previous hike. 5 miles from Rabun Bald.|
It turned out to be a good decision. I flew on the return trip. Bugs, briars, heat-- none of it bothered me. I freed myself from my arbitrary pointless goal, at least for the day.