The hardest part of a difficult journey is taking the first step…and that step was taken today. The Lodge shuttle drop us off at Amicalola Falls State Park on a cool 40 degree morning around 9:15.
After registering at the visitor center (#1335 for the season…plus a similar amount who start 9 miles ahead near the top of Springer Mtn), photos were taken at the famous approach trail arch and off I went.
There are a set of ~630 steps about a mile in that help you reach the top of the falls.
The official start of the AT is about 9 miles along at the top of Springer Mtn, identified by the famous hiker plaques and the first official White Blaze that marks the trail all the way to Mt Katahdin in Maine.
There was a great view from the top of Springer. Leaves haven’t quite budded at this elevation yet.
Home for the night was the Stover Creek shelter (a fancy two story variety). With a motley crew of thru hikers and section hikers from all over the country and world (a couple of Germans)
Black bears are fairy active in the area so shelter also provides cables to hang your food from (in background…FYI, not my tent).
A successful first day without too much undue stress on the body…just some tightness in my Achilles.