Ledbetter Ridge  2/14/15

What says Valentines Day better than 14 degrees?


Maybe grabbing each other's chest regions?  I don't know.  The cold can drive you to great lengths.

The week was strange it that I was originally slated to join JD and a large crew at Kephart Shelter.  The women in the group bailed and about that time, Carlton and Trey got hold of me to say they were going to cs 9.  Then Slap called and we headed that direction when Carlton and Trey bailed and we changed to cs 10 because Slap had never stayed there.  Then Red came on board and the rest is history.  I'm guessing we were but four of less than two dozen folks in the Smokies that night.

She was a trooper for braving the elements.  I must note that the backcountry office tried every stop to convince me to stay home.  The guy was on the phone for 5 minutes predicting the worst winds in the Smokies ever.  Then he told me it was supposed to be in the single digits on Sunday morning.

Well, he was right on one account.

It was cold in the morning.

Slap regaled  us with hunting tales and brought some fresh venison to share.

And it was DELICIOUS!

When I came rolling into camp, who was standing there with John the Red?  None other than GD Jack.  Jack had been out dayhiking the loop up to Spence Field.  What a coincidence?  In half a million acres  of Smokies and 800 plus miles of trail, there is Jack standing in our campsite. 

Red started the fire and had it blazing before we got to the spot.  That was a nice surprise.

That may not look like it but she is staring at solid ice on the trail.  Fourteen degree ice.   We had an outstanding time and, like Red said, "several scenes took place".   And not all were Slaps!

It was good to be back in the hills with intrepid Highlanders and friends.  Remember to check the Upcoming Backpacking Trips for weekend plans if you are inclined to join us.