Tuesday–March 2, 2021
Location–Heflin, Americas Best Value Inn
What a grand time with the Cranford’s last evening–southern hospitality at its finest!
I would like to get back on the trail by eight this morning, so Rick is up fixing coffee a bit after six, plus a fine breakfast of eggs and toast for me. Then we’re out and gone, back to the trailhead where Rick fetched me from the trail yesterday evening. I’m pack up and haulin’ a few minutes after eight.
Rick had told me this was one of his favorites sections of the Pinhoti. And I quickly see why; manicured tread that winds and dips into quiet coves of hardwood and pine, along little (rock-hopper) streams. There are many climbs, but they’re not the least unpleasant. Little Hillabee Falls, it’s worth the hike in just to see them. No roaring thunder. Nothing spectacular. Just an intimate and delightful spot tucked a ways down in a picturesque cove.
There are also many little streams and brooks along the trail today, offering fine, level campsites. Some require fording (rock hops), others have bridges. And the happy trail just winds and winds along.
I reach the100-mile mark on the Pinhoti today. So, I’m just shy of a fourth of the way to Springer Mountain and the beginning of the Appalachian Trail. I should arrive there the last of this month.
I’d planned on ending my hike for today at FSR-500, the Heflin Spur parking lot. But it’s just mid afternoon and it’s only 3.5 miles on in, so decision is to go for Heflin–an 18-mile day.
A short way up the spur trail I hear a chainsaw. Come to find it’s Adam Dasinger clearing a blowdown. Adam is a good friend and we spend a bit of time talking trail.
In Heflin, at city hall, I meet Tammy Perry, then shortly comes Robby Brown, Heflin Mayor. It’s picture time by the Pinhoti Trail sign out front. The mayor is truly glad to meet me; a happy time! Adam stops by to drive me to the motel down at the interstate–my room there provided and paid for by the kind and generous folks of (this super fine trail-town) Heflin.
In the evening, and after driving all the way up from Montgomery, my good friend Chris Kent arrives just in time to drive Little John, Swampwater, Braden (hikers staying the night) and the old Nimblewill, over to the Damn Yankee Whiskey Bar for supper.
A mighty fine day…
The goal we all strive toward is happiness,
contentment, the dignity of the individual,
and the good life.