Starting Location: Amicalola Falls State Park
Destination: Springer Mt. Shelter
Total Miles: 8.8
Day #1 of my adventure is finally here!!! I left the lodge at 9:30 this morning after a nice breakfast, and walked under bright blue skies all day on very level and easy trail to Springer Mt. and the southern terminus of the AT. Saw a few local day hikers on my way to Springer who were amazed to see me in shorts and a t-shirt, themselves bundled as if it was still mid-winter on such a nice day. I had to re-assure them that I wasn't crazy—I was just from Vermont. Who knows, to them it might mean the same thing!
A beautiful day to reach the start of the trail, and I was the first thru-hiker to do so today. Met Seiko at the shelter, a 13-time thru-hiker who is attempting his 14th—pretty amazing, especially considering he went through 3 cigarettes in the 10 minutes or so that I spoke with him. Also met a young guy just out of high school who, as coincidence would have it, grew up in Baldwinsville, NY which is only about 30 minutes from where I went to high school. Real nice sunset on the summit before I grabbed my stone to carry all the way to Katahdin and made my way into my sleeping bag for a chilly first night.