I have this dream that we will hike the AT in its entirety one day. It’s far fetched I know, but who knows! Until then we are working hard to make sure the kids catch the hiking bug. I read them stories about the trail, show them maps, talk it up like it’s on everyone’s bucket list!
So far my plan is working and if the boys know we are anywhere near a portion of the trail they beg us to stop and hike a few hours of it.
This was their third time on the AT and it checked the box for completing a section in a new state.
We struggled at first to find the trail head and nearly gave up.
I’m so glad we didn’t! Despite the rain this may just be the most gorgeous hike we have been on so far. We crossed more streams and waterfalls than I could count. Wild irises were blooming all around us and the boys got to meet true AT hikers that were coming off the trail after several weeks. It definitely helped feed the dream!
This portion of the trail is off of interstate 40 at the Tennessee/North Carolina Border. Tucked away in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and only a few hours away from Asheville, NC; it would be an easy part of the trail for anyone to jump on. We were able to add it to our list thanks to The Texas Dash and I am so glad we took the time to make the detour on the way home.
Jack and I have a similar hiking tempo which means he is in front of the camera more than Will. Bill and Will usually scamper ahead while Jack and I slow way down and take in all the details. He will say things like “one day I’m going to take my kids here” or “I wish people knew about this place, maybe they would be nicer to the Earth then”. He usually has me crying or laughing as we explore these little pockets of beauty.
Will on the other hand is eager to learn knife skills and survival techniques from his dad. I can usually hear them in the distance talking about fire building and how to protect oneself from the elements. I cannot wait to see what these kids will be when they grow up!
After several hours on the trail we made our way back to the car muddy, wet and blissed out!