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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

She's Off! .....and Walking!

Monday, April 16. 

Well, I will be adding photos of her "send-off" later, but in the meantime, I'll update everyone.  We left her at the trail head on Sunday morning (Apr 15) around 10:30 a.m.  The weather was absolutely beautiful, around 74 degrees and the leafing-out on all the trees was such a vivid bright light green.  She had long johns under her shorts in case it cooled off; they were a bright green, too!  She'd looked crazy in them at home, sort of like the Grinch, but here in the woods, she blended in! --  That won't be the case in the northern forests!

She had to sign in at the Ranger Station and they questioned her reasons for heading out alone (believe me, I did too).  It was tough to see her go, but at the same time, Kelly and I were excited for her.  Ohana (her dog) was certain that I was a negligent mother, oblivious of the fact that Kristin had forgotten to get back into the car before I drove away!  She nudged me and whined for about 10 minutes and then kept her eyes glued out the window for the next 500 miles!

We heard from Kristin several times that day letting us know that all was well and that she'd made a couple acquaintances with different hikers.  She had successfully climbed the 604 steps that hikers have to face to raise them up to the level where the approach trail starts.  She hiked Springer Mountain, and then continued on and slept at a shelter that was actually on the Appalachian Trail the first night.  She had rehydrated her pasta and sauce, had her breadsticks she had brought from home and a whoopie pie she had kept safe in the top of her pack.  After this.....breadsticks and sweets will be an occasionaly luxury!    :)

By early evening, she had set up camp-- blown up her pad, unrolled her sleeping bag, cached her food sachel (bears) and was ready to hit the hay.  She said the sunset of pinks and purples was gorgeous and she was at peace.  'sweet dreams'


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