Day 8, 4/13: Mile 100, Albert Mtn Tower (16.5mi)

The day started with a relatively easy climb to the highest point we’ve seen on the trail so far, Standing Indian Mtn at ~5400′. The views were spectacular!

Here are my hiking partners for the morning (and last nights camping-mates), Olive and Olive’s Human (aka Rob from Ohio).

Now entering the “Green Tunnel”…

A lunch stop at the Carter Gap shelter…

Nantahala is Cherokee for Land of the Noon-day Sun (I think this is because you can’t see the sun until it’s directly overhead when the trees leaf out)

The last 1/4 mile of today’s 16.5 mile day was a grunt! This was a quintessential AT climb, I’m actually surprised we have experienced this sooner. It was very technical hike up steep rocks and slick roots…

A panorama from the Fire Tower…

I meant to take a before picture of my feet…they are still in pretty good shape. I’ve been experiencing some intermittent discomfort on the top of my left foot (not sure from what?), as well as tightness in my Achilles at the heel which ebbs and flows throughout the day. Hopefully, this get better as I get stronger…rather then worse.

Apparently, I wasn’t the only one with the idea to camp at the Albert Mtn fire tower. This is Kaysa and Jessica from Ohio who are doing their first backpacking trip (a 25 mile loop). They were kind enough to start a fire and invite me to join them. We he a good time chatting until the sunset and when we all went into our tents…brrr! The plan in the AM is to watch the sunrise from the tower. Luckily the sun doesn’t come up until ~6:45am.

Bug Juice- out

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