AT Miles = 10.4 / 238.4
Other Miles = 0.1 / 13.7
Total Miles = 10.5 /252.2
It had snowed all night and there was about 5" or 6" of snow on the ground, and it was still snowing. It was gorgeous out, but cold. As you can maybe imagine, 17 people trying to cook breakfast and pack up their gear all inside a trail shelter would be utter chaos. We thought we would just stay on our sleeping bags and wait while the others got their stuff together and left, but it soon became apparent they would be going nowhere very soon, as they all seemed to be fgussing about with coffee and putzing around with their gear. So finally I got up and retrieved all of our food bags from the bear cables, and we all ate a quick breakfast of whatever cold foods we had, packed up our gear, and headed out for a hopefully quick 10 mile hike down to the hostel.
It was a beautiful day to hike through the snow. Yup. Spring-time in the Smokies! We arrived here at the hostel around 1:00pm or so. It is a rather unique place. We are all sitting in the bunkhoused arrayeds around the wood stove. Everything here is on the homor system. You pick up an envelope and write down everything you take or use; $15 for a bunk. $10 if you get a pizza, $0.75 for a sodas, and on and on. When you leave you put your money in the envelope and drop it in a box.
Tomorrow we will head out again. The plan is to hike most of the way to Hot Spring over the next two days, camp about 3 miles outside of town on Thursday night, then make it into town early on Friday morning, in time for breakfast in the morning. The trail actually goesd right through toen. I plan to take a zero day there, so will get a room for Friday and Saturday nights, then head back out on Sunday.
Rigth now it is still snolwing, but the weather is supposed to moderate and it should be reasonably warm and drier the next few days.