Right now we are grabbing some early dinner in the tiny town of Elk Park, NC. The diner is also an antique store, the town coffee shop, AND ice cream shop. It is a small but charming place! We are charging up our phones, stuffing our faces and updating our blog before heading back into the woods. This will be our longest stretch (10 days) without a shower, laundry or whatever, but the weather has been amazing so it’s fine!
Our stop in Erwin, TN was one of our favorites! We had a really relaxing first day, and we got the best cabin available at Uncle Johnny’s! They built it for the owners mother in law but she is not always there and so they rent it when she isn’t. It was like having a tiny Tennessee home for a few days and we loved it! We cooked our own food and had our own shower! Yay! Also the first night we did not share with anyone so it was nice and quiet. The second night we took in all our lost boys (Gentleman, Spaghetti and el Mundo) because it stormed.
After too much fun and a longer zero stop than anticipated (always) we headed out. We had an incredible week of weather and the views were so great!! It was a really beautiful stretch. Lots of balds and beautiful spots. I think it has been my favorite so far!! This week we hiked with Spaghetti and el Mundo a lot, as well as Iron Jen and Muskrat, Toasty, Downhill, and Light Bulb! All our faves ❤️
There were two highlights of the week. First was when we came upon a domesticated pig that was now living in the wood on Unaka Mountain!! She was SO CUTE and friendly and Lightning Bug, and Toasty, and I named her Truffle and hung out way too long. I am basically in love and want this pig as my pet.
The scenery was also incredible. Lots of high elevation and spruce and pine forests. They are so magical! Pictures don’t do them justice.
The same day we met Truffle we had a MAGICAL camp out. It was a big group of hikers and one of the guys plays fiddle and brought his along. Another guy made a campfire and so we had a fantastic fire and fiddle music. Then me and an older guy named Free Bird sang Country Roads Take Me Home while Fiddler played and it was a big highlight of the trip. Such a free and fun and beautiful evening.
Finally, there was the NIGHT HIKE! The evening of the music we figured out the next day was a full moon, and so I decided that me, Lightning Bug, Spaghetti and El Mundo would night hike with the full moon. Everyone was down and so we made a plan!
The next morning we woke up early and summited ROAN mountain, which was gorgeous, and then at the top took a nap in a glorious pine forest. Needles were so soft we didn’t even need sleeping pads and we just cowboy camped! We woke up around 6:30 and made dinner and El Mundo made coffee. We got ready and headed out around 8:00! It was so cool walking down the gorgeous pine forest mountain at dusk, and then the rest of the hike (we did 10 miles) was stunning balds and in and out of forest and then rocky climbs. Half the time the moon was so bright we didn’t even need headlamps!! We had a snack in a beautiful field and around 1:00am we found a campsite and crashed for the night! The night hike was SO COOL words and pics (pics we sadly don’t have) can’t describe! We had a great time with our friends, too! Oh also technically that is our longest mileage day, 18.6 miles!!!
We hitched into Elk Park, NC for our resupply box and found the diner and had tasty food 😄 and some cool local kids kept us company, and it’s been a fun visit