Winter Appalachian Trail – Day 37 (27 miles)
Today had to be one of the better days on trail; Dragon’s Tooth, McAfee’s Knob and Tinker Cliff.
My day started with packing up my wet tarp from the rain I got yesterday and then heading up the to the first highlight of the day, Dragons Tooth.
It started out as a fairly normal climb up to the ridgeline, and stayed this way until I hit a mile section similar to an adventure playground. I was hopping over, around and through rocks and had a ball for half an hour or so. There was even some reinforcement bar ladders to climb.
But alas, all good things must come to an end and I dropped down to a road crossing and had a short climb onto the second ridge of the day. One that I followed for the rest of the day.
I spent the next 3hrs walking towards McAfee’s Knob. I found this section way harder than the scrambling I just finished. Infact I fell twice. I was walking through miles of deep leaves that often came up to my knees. I could not see what I was standing on underneath, and constantly found rocks and roots where I wanted to step.
But I got through and had a glorious view from McAfee’s Knob, with a clear, blue sky to cast my gaze upon from this iconic lookout.
I met a couple of section hikers up here. One had thru hiked the trail 4 times and flood me with so much information over lunch that it went in one ear and came straight out the other.
They were great company and I walked with them for a mile after lunch until I really needed to pick up my pace to get to my planned destination.
I then hit Tinker Cliffs and the third highlight for the day. They were not as entertaining as Dragon’s Tooth or as jaw dropping as McAfee, but the cliffs had some great views into the valley as I walked along the top. A huge bonus was the sun setting as the cliffs were just about to finish. I got to see the horizon glow with changing colours as night fell.
I walked a few minutes after dark in order to get the most out of the day and then found a nice spot to sleep. I have to say this was one of the more interesting days so far. I’m lucky to have a cool, clear day to enjoy it.