Monday–March 1, 2021
What a hectic time, but a joy-filled time, as folks came to the mountain the past number of days to give a grand sendoff and wish me well for Odyssey 2021.
Last evening, at sunset, I lowered the flag for my final time and departed the mountain. Hopefully, this next winter I’ll again return to Flagg to resume caretaker duties, but that’s a far off time and I must not think of it.
I was an invited guest at the Pinhoti Outdoor Center last night. Such a special place, a hiker hostel supreme. There I shared time with Runaway and Weatherman. Thanks Nathan, Kimm, Buddy, and Bo!
It’s a rainy morning as Kimm loads Weatherman and the old Nomad to shuttle us to the trail, Weatherman to Bulls Gap and me to Cheaha.
Still raining (more a mist) as I enjoy a bit of time on the Cheaha Store porch with Cameron and Braden–and my support crew, Kimm, and Rick & Martha Cranford. Disappointed I didn’t get to see my friend, Mandi, who’s been here at Cheaha many a year.
I begin from the store (where my hike last ended) to climb the mountain on up to the CCC stone tower on Cheaha. Hey, hey–my hike from the CCC Flagg Mountain Tower to the Cheaha CCC Tower–DONE! What a pleasant surprise, the incredible views from the tower. I’d expected the place to be socked in, but distant mountains, their summits poking above the clouds, are visible all around!
Hiking the boardwalk to Bald Rock I share time with Kimm and Martha before heading on down the connector and back to the Pinhoti Trail.
The mist persists. However, the rain forecast for today holds off, and although the gloom remains, the hike along is most enjoyable–as I’m soon joined by Braden and Swampwater, both are hiking the ECT out of Key West! Early afternoon we lunch together at Hillabee Creek. Then they’re off and gone, headed for Canada.
Late afternoon, hiking in to greet me, then to turn, and return with me to CR-24 is my good friend of many years, Rick Cranford.
Evening now, and guest of the Cranfords at their lovely home, I’m able to soak my tired, weary old body in a delightfully hot tub–before being served a grand supper!
Was expecting a long rainy day, but…
May your mountains rise
into and above the clouds.