Day 12: Winding Stair Gap to Wayah Bald Shelter

It was tough to leave our warm hotel this morning because we knew that it was going to be freezing tonight. The First Baptist Church in Franklin served us all you can eat pancakes and bacon. It was delicious and everyone there was really nice. We’re loving the trail magic here in the south.

We headed back to the trail around 9 and were greeted with about 6 inches of snow on the ground. I’ll tell you, it was hard leaving that warm bed this morning. It was pretty clear that our entire hike would be in the snow today. I definitely was not expecting this much snow in NC that’s for sure. I’m really happy that I bought an extra base layer for my legs for hiking and gloves. They were definitely needed today. But it was so beautiful hiking in the snow today. It’s definitely a day to remember on the trail.

I fell three times because of the snow. The first time I fell directly on my already sore right knee. It ended up not being as bad as I thought, but I may have a nice bruise in the morning. The second fall was very graceful as I landed softly on a deep snowbank. I wish someone had filmed the third one because it was one for the books. My foot landed in a deep spot unexpectedly and I fell face first into the snow. I just started laughing because I was stuck there in the snow with 30 lbs of pack weight keeping me down. Miles had to help me up and we just couldn’t stop laughing.

There was a tower on top of Wayah Bald that we climbed up to see the limited views of the Nantahala Forest. We made it to the shelter around 3:30 and reserved our spots inside. We did 11 miles today. It’s a full house here in the shelter with Teflon, Mouse, Chris, and three new hikers we hadn’t met yet.

As I sit here in my sleeping bag with all of my clothes on, I know that this is going to be the coldest night yet. I think we’ll survive with all of the body heat in here though.

8 thoughts on “Day 12: Winding Stair Gap to Wayah Bald Shelter

  1. Keep at it, you guys are making great progress!! Stay warm tonight n Njoy it!!!
    Thanks again for posting, love reading about the adventures!!

  2. Frank Bisher says: Love the blogs Lindsey. I hate the snow up here in Maine on a normal day, but I can’t imagine hiking 11-12 miles in the stuff carrying all that weight. Makes me want to be down South in warm North Carolina. All the mountain names are blowing my mind. Do they all look different, each one beautiful in its own way? Love you guys. Try to fall only two times tomorrow. Frank.

  3. Save those knees Linz you’re going to need them. Good luck tonight staying warm, this is certainly not the Southern warmth we are accustomed too and I can’t imagine being on the trail tonight.

  4. 11 miles in six inches of snow is an accomplishment in itself. Hope you managed to sleep. Little-known fact: Fifteen minutes of three men’s robust snoring can raise the temperature of a medium-sized room by 1 degree Fahrenheit. I may have made that up.

  5. Brrrrr. That’s more snow than we have here in Bucksport. Our nights are still a little chillier, though. Stay warm.

  6. you’ve got me laughing! The visual of the face plant with 30lbs holding you there got me going too. We’ve all done the skiing face plants and struggled with our skis, but not a 30 lb pack. Glad you got a spot in the shelter. You go girl!

  7. Don’t forget, you can heat water to put into your container and bring it into your sleeping bag. Put it in a sock if it feels too hot. Placed between your legs it will be near an artery for heat distribution.

  8. You two are really making history! Can’t wait to see some of your pictures. Too bad you don’t have the good old Maine woodstove fire to keep you warm!

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