Day 29-31: From Tower to Gorge

Day 29: Near Wayah Bald (Mile 120)-Wesser Bald (Mile 130.5); 10.5 miles

Our alarm rang extra early so we could beat the sunrise. We climbed the nearby stone tower at the top of Wayah Bald and watched the first light fall on distant peaks.

From the tower we could see Standing Indian and Deep Gap where we had been days ago. It’s always very satisfying to look back on our progress like this.

We enjoyed a relaxed morning, then began walking down off the bald. We encountered some trail workers from Natahala Hiking Club and chatted with them. Thanks for all your excellent trail work!

Farther down the trail, Boot Scoot and his friend David Bradford Donovan were providing trail magic. We had been planning to stop for lunch anyway and hungrily devoured their tasty snack packets. In addition, to North Star’s delight, they had portioned a variety of spices into small plastic bags. We looked forward to the extra kick these would add to some of our meals. David and Boot Scoot have just launched Yeti Food Outfitters which provides food and resupply logistics for hikers. They’re good guys with a cool small business.

Continuing uphill, the bright sun and temperatures in the upper 70s made for hot, sweaty climbing. We couldn’t complain, though – the warmth was most welcome!

The climb ended at the top of Wesser Bald where we found another fire tower. This tower rose above even the tallest trees.